15 months

July 4, 2010

You’re 15 months now.  You shake your head no, you sing in the car, you babble.  You throw yourself down when you’re frustrated (a lot) and sometimes get really mad when we try to feed you.  You want to do it yourself, which also means we better keep our hands off our own water when you want a sip.  You smile, a lot.  You tell jokes and laugh and laugh.  You laugh at our jokes, too. 

Bernal Heights library playground, San Francisco. June 2010.

You say whheeeee when you go down the slide.  You say boo (balloon), ball (ball), get go! (let’s go!), hi (hi), cat (cat), cat (dog), hot (hot), hat (hat), gye-gye (bye-bye) and lots of gibberish (but we know exactly what you’re saying).  You’re saying cement truck and catch the ball and big truck and big bus.  This is your world — trucks and balls and big things and little bugs.  You hold out your hand, rubbing your fingertips together, and call out kee, kee, kee (kitty kitty kitty). 

You love to say hi, and since I know you so well, I can say that you have a couple different meanings for hi.  There’s good morning, i love you, i missed you, how’s it going, hi, hey, and check it out i can talk and get almost anybody to talk to me with just one magic syllable.  Today we sat outside while your dad walked to town.  “Bye bye da da,” you said, over and over until he was out of sight.

You’re picking up sign language faster than we can teach it to you (where did that sign book go anyway?).  You say more food, no more food, nurse, fan, and you tried to say i love you back to me.  Yesterday, we were at a cornhole tournament (what? look it up) and since you just woke from your nap, I held you on my hip while I played.  My opponent picked up the bags for me each time it was my turn.  You signed “thank you” each time (he didn’t notice).

Backyard patio, studio apartment, San Francisco. June 2010

You love flowers, and feeding dandelions to the bokbokboks (chickens).

You still startle easily — loud noises, big trucks — which worked well for us in San Francisco.  We spent the weekend there with you after your older brothers went off to San Diego.

This time we rented a studio apartment — costing less than a hotel room — in a quiet steep-hilled neighborhood.  Bernal Heights seemed exceedingly family-friendly, with a sweet playground behind the library, a children’s resale shop (amazing deals!), and strollers and pregnant bellies everywhere I looked.  I loved it (again, loving that city), and I tried to picture living there, and our other boys’ life in that city, how their adventures would transform from the earth and wild into the city’s wild culture, how their excited stories would shift from a fox-sighting to… what? Ha. I think they would turn inward — more video games (is it possible) and more tv.  Less playing at the park and riding bikes ’round the neighborhood.  What romantic notions I have that the city would work for us.

You were scared on that one bus ride — the crowded one on the last leg to the ball park.  It was hot, the bus was late (which always makes it so packed full of people) and the stroller penned us in.  The old man beside me mumbled about that maybe I was holding you too much, and when you reached for your daddy, the man asked me, “what’s he got that you don’t?”  Too much to explain, old man.  A woman on the other side smiled.  I told her, “he’s a good daddy.” She agreed.

You also didn’t like the crowd into the ball park, but when we got up to that middle level, and you saw the field, and you heard the noise, your eyes lit up.  “Baseball, baby!” I told you.  You smiled, clapped, swung an imaginery bat, and said, go go go!

Just waking up, San Francisco.

When we got home from our trip, you looked under the covers for Max in his bed.  The next morning you did the same.  You walked through their room saying hi, looked out the back door, then back to Max’s bed to look under the covers.

We have a great big house now.  We have a great big kitchen and three great big bedrooms and a great big living room, neatly divided into “Sam’s area” and the rest of the living room.  We have a smaller back yard, but lots of sunshine for the vegetables I have been wanting to grow for years.  Our neighbors’ chickens live beyond our yard, and we have sweet moments feeding them through the fence.  We still can’t have a dog, but it’s OK for now.  Our cats are happy here too and almost every day we’re sure to find three of them napping in the same room.

You’re a tough kid, Sam.  You had your first bloody injury yesterday, and with a small cry, you climbed into my lap only to be distracted by a ball, which you stood up to toddle after.  Even when you bumped the back of your head today, you barely cried.  You love to climb, and we love to watch you maneuver your body.  You have great balance, and a good awareness of what each of your limbs is up to. 

Your awareness is amazing.  So observant.   Ahh, baby — remind me to slow down, and show me what you see.

Humboldt Bay Wildlife Refuge, Loleta.


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