One does not advance the swimming abilities of ducks by throwing the eggs in the water. -Multatuli (pen name of Eduard Douwes Dekker), novelist (1820-1887)
It never fails to amaze me how much my children have grown. Here I am, beside them each day, all day long most days and yet, when I take a moment and look back... Wow.
Wyl stood up for a friend a few days ago. Neighbor boys from a couple houses away were over along with the gal next door. The neighbor boys were being rather rough with our stuff and throwing bricks around. Wyl told me and I had them stop throwing the bricks. A while later, he came in and said it was getting too cold outside, and I asked if everyone got home okay. He said only the gal next door had been playing and that the neighbor boys had gone earlier. I asked why. He got very animated and told me with no little amount of disgust that the boys were being mean to the girl and threatening her. He warned them to stop or they had to go home. They didn't stop. So my 9 year old son made them leave our yard and go home! I would never have done such a thing at his age... meanness made me afraid. Of course, I had lots of meanness around me, so not only was it "the norm", but it was done by stronger people to weaker ones, and I felt weak. I am indescribably happy that my kid(s) are so strong and certain of themselves and unswerving in their judgement of what is right that they *can* do the right thing! He didn't have to do it on his own-he knew he could come to me and I would do it, but he took it upon himself. Hmmm... it is only now that I am wondering why. Not a big deal, just curious.
Wyl is recently helping in little ways. Surprising ways. He loves to make the beds. Granted, they're not "hospitality ready", but it is more than I do! Well, for my own bed. I know he prefers his to be made, so when I think of it, I'll make his for him. He's been washing a few dishes, occasionally. He scrubbed the toilet the other day. Storm, of course, loves to clean. He has quite a fixation on cleaning the bathroom sink! :~) He's been asking to clean the toilet, too, but since he's only 4, I asked him if he could wait a few days-that way I could pre-clean it and get the germs under control (at least in *my* mind, they'd be under control...) Wyl does little things here and there... organizing the cereal boxes, lining up the coffee mugs, straightening the medicine cabinet. All are so surprising that it is like a little gift every time I see one-I should tell him that!
Both my boys have been snugglier than "usual" this year... Is it because they feel like they need more of me or just because they're happy and want to express it? Should I delve into that or am I just trying to make trouble for myself? :~) Putting in little troubles where there are none?
I got to visit my great aunt last week, who is my last connection to her sister, my grandma. She lost her husband at the beginning of December and is quite sad and lost without him-they'd been married for 60 years... She was a shell of her former self, gray and fragile when I got there. Once the boys warmed up to her and she felt they were comfortable enough, she played with them and laughed with them and her color started coming back and she seemed more her old self. It was lovely to see. She talked about going back to teaching little kids like she used to, years ago, and I can't help but think it would be so good for her. I hope she finds reason to keep going, because she still has so much to share and I'm not ready to let her go!
It has been a week of surprises, reflections and interesting things and people. Life is pretty darn good.