I look at you now with your blonde hair that curls just onto your neck, never before cut, with your fingernails full of dirt, cheeks rosy from running so fast, a ring of more dirt around your neck, eyes full of mischief and it just doesn’t seem possible that you were ever that 8 pound, 6 ounce bundle I brought home. I remember wondering “who would you be?” and “what would you be like?” and now these questions take no thought whatsoever to answer. You are polite and ornery. You are funny and love attention. You love to perform and expect a cheer or clap every time you deem yourself worthy. You can say any word and talk ALL of the time. You ask a lot of questions and love to explore and take time to find new treasures. You are silly and like to push the limits. You are strong and fast and have an arm that scares us a little. You go full speed and would never stop to rest if we didn’t make you. You are sociable and tell everyone “hi” and “bye” and just can’t wait every day to see your little neighbor friends. You are smart and learn so quickly. You won’t do anything you don’t want to do no matter how much we push you. You love doggies and are courageous when climbing rocks. You have a memory like an elephant and correct us when we are wrong. You love to hike and fall down on purpose just to yell “safe” and “Reeve okay.” Basically, you are one awesome human being and I’m so glad we get to watch every little trait develop. I’m just so glad you are the person you are. Strong. Decisive. Independent and sure. Confident. Capable. Smart and courageous. Don’t change….
Reeve, I just couldn’t stand it if you weren’t mine. I know that if I were just now, today, finding out I were pregnant with you I would want all of THIS. I would dream about life being just like it is. YOU being just who you are.
Every month I keep this ongoing list of things you do and say, accomplishments and new skills on my iPhone. Every month, so far, the list has just gotten longer and longer. This month, it’s by far the shortest it’s ever been. Not because you did less this month by any means, but b/c it just all went too fast. I can’t possibly write down every new word you say, each day you blow me away with your vocabulary. Each day you can run a little faster, climb higher and do so much more than just the day before. You, my child, are just learning and getting bigger by the second.
At your 18 month checkup, the doctor had the nurse measure you THREE times b/c he just didn’t believe you could possibly be as tall as you are. I mean, your daddy and I are both tall (myself more than average) but you are just HUGE! I can’t tell you how many times people react with “Wow! He’s a big boy” when I tell them your age. I see your friends who are the same age, most older in fact, and are a good 4″ shorter than you and it’s not until you are side-by-side with them that I realize you really are a big kid! The doctor also asked me if you knew 30-40 words. Again, I laughed at him. I counted silently to myself that you know over 400 words (including rattlesnake, uterus and restroom, penis and vagina).
Reeve, you just never shut up. And I do just mean that in the best possible way. I know it means that you are just curious and eager to learn. In the backseat of the car, you give me a play-by-play of everything you see behind you. I’ve caught you saying, “Reeve pooping” and “Reeve poop-ded” and “Reeve’s poop” and “poop in Reeve’s diaper” and “poop is stinky” all in the span of 2 minutes. My boy, very smart of you to use proper tense and possessives. I’m serious. You shouldn’t be able to say some of the things you say. You especially shouldn’t be walking around telling strangers “boys have penis, girls have gina” as you do. While I think it’s hilarious, your daddy has informed me not everyone has my sense of humor. You still prefer the word “NO” or “No way” over any other. It was upon being asked, “is Reeve cool?” by daddy that you gave us your first ever “yeah” this month. It’s still more fun to tell me “no” but I can get a “yeah” (sometimes even a “uh huh”) most mornings when I say, “did you dream about Deklan/superman/Hannah/baseball.” You still introduce yourself as “Awesome Man” and have this nasty little habit of saying, “Oh, dammit” when you can’t figure something out. I honestly have no idea where you get that from, it’s not something Daddy and I really even say. On of my favorite things you’ve ever said was this week when I pulled your hoodie on (you HATE anything on your head) and you sputtered, “take it…take hoodie….take it…open Reeve’s head.” Ha ha. I just thought, well, that makes sense.
We pulled up next to a bus the other day and you said, “hey people” and just kept waving and waving at them. You love to talk about all things Halloween and are most obsessed with ghosts. You look around in the sky, off in the distance and repeat over and over again, “ghosts…can’t see them” with your arms up to question why? You like skeletons and call them “gell-agains” and are only slightly afraid of spiders and the neighbors blow-up black cat. Your voice is so high-pitched. When you do your shapes, you squeak out “o-vul” and “tri-ang-uhl.”
My least favorite thing you say is “hold you…..HOLD youuuuuu” over and over in the upwards of 50 times a day. Oh, I love it too…I do….I know there will come a day when you won’t let me hold you, but it’s quite annoying when you just want to be carried all day. I’m torn between letting you just whine or holding you b/c I’d just like to keep you little forever. You stand hugging my knees and go limp until I pick you up anyway. I really do hear this no less than 50 times a day. I find myself telling you, “I don’t want to hold you” or “you can walk” and then have to remind myself that you just need me and that’s what all moms really want, isn’t it. The problem isn’t only that you say this over and over, it’s that it’s always followed by “stand up, Mommy”….see, “hold youuuuuu” isn’t good enough if I am sitting down, I have to be walking around AND holding you. You stand just so on my thighs with your hard little shoes on and pinch my fat and repeat it so often I feel like you are a broken record. “HOLD YOUUUUUUU….Stand UP, Mommy!!!!” Geesh, Okay….
It’s my pleasure to see you so interested, so willing to learn. You never struggle with a word and know exactly what it is you want to say. This has certainly made life easier. Last night you asked Poppy (who is visiting with Granny) “Do…you…like….noodles?” Each word so thought out, each getting higher as you spoke and with the perfect inflection to let us know it was a question. You love to learn, pulling books off the shelf, appropriately calling it the “shape bookie” or the “llama bookie” or the “monster bookie.” You love to trace the shapes or talk about colors. Lately, we have been asking you to tell US the story. This is quite funny. Most times, there is a ghost and monster somewhere and you “can’t see them.” We have been working on colors and are certain you are messing with us. The answer is always “pink” even though we know you know. We can count to 3 and it goes something like this, “one….two….freeeeeeeee!” You are obsessed with your Little People books, but get so mad at one page where the Don LInny character doesn’t have shoes on. You are very concerned that her feet are cold and this has now turned into a sock obsession. I love hearing you say “Thank you” (fank you) and am so proud that you are so generous with your thank you’s. Same with Please (peas).
Life still revolved around your “Men” and we don’t get too far without stepping on one of them. You are always very concerned about their welfare, but have also really taken to Panda Bears (pannabears….one word) and Army Men and kicking the football. You are learning how to climb things and are becoming an expert at “hanging” at the park or on any railing. You are a little nervous about the slide after a small incident where you tried to go down on your belly and had a slide burn on your cheek. You still run with your arms flapping wildly behind you.
You are eating much better and we’ve discovered you will eat meat that is SPICY (picy) and still love brocolli and cheese and most any form of carbohydrates and even ate steak. Your napping took a nosedive after returning from our Beach Vacation, but we are back on track with you now sleeping about 2 hours on our bed. This is wonderful, but I’m terrified to leave the room as I’ve seen you stand up disoriented and nearly fall off the bed. Needless to say, I’ve gotten thousands of pictures retouched for clients sitting on the floor near you.
The best part of this 18th month was the beach vacation to Isle of Palms with CJ, Kim, Baby Charlie and Julia. You met new friends and spend a lot of time rough-housing in the nude in tide pools along the beach. This trip was Mommy’s 2nd favorite vacation of her life. It was wonderful to spend time in such a gorgeous house, with dear friends eating wonderful food and just relaxing. You loved splashing and building sand castles and were able to pee on command by the end of the week. You also took a poop on the trail back to the house. 🙂 You rode on the back of a bike and flew a Batman kite with Daddy. You were very kind to Baby Charlie, yet had your Worst Day Ever on the flights home. You hit mommy so hard across the cheek I cried, but was able to chalk it up to screwed up schedules and time changes.
You also enjoyed a visit from Granny & Poppy. I was worried it would take you a couple of days to warm up to them since the last time you say them was over 7 months ago, but you took right to them. Pulling Granny around by the finger and saying “Poppy, stand up.” You just love them and work so hard to make them laugh…Little Ham!
No matter who you meet or visit though, it’s quite evident that you are MY Number One fan. You just can’t get enough of me and I am your favorite audience. And vice versa, Dude. Though nearing 2-years-old, you still always reach for my pinkie to hold and freely hand over 20-30 hugs/kisses to me each day. Our kisses are wet, gooey, sloppy messes on the cheek and I just love them.
If I know nothing else about life, Reeve, it’s that I am by no means a perfect mom. Some days are hard, though few and far between. Most days with you are just long, but are never more than we can get through together. I still fall into bed each night exhausted, but am usually so proud that it took you between 3-5 minutes to rock down that I don’t care. I’m elated that you sleep 12 hours each night and am reminded daily of how lucky we are to have you and each other when so many other mommy’s have struggles we can’t even comprehend. And so, thought I’m not a perfect mom, my love for you is. My desire to BE perfect is so unattainable, yet so intense as I want only to be the best for you.
I wrote in your book on my bedside today and realized one year ago we were in Hawaii at this time. How is it possible that you aren’t in those footed jammies covered in drool, gummy waiting for teeth, hair thin and eating mushed sweet potatoes? Every month is my favorite, of that I’ve already said, but each is so special for such a different reason. This past month was, undoubtedly, my favorite because I’ve truly gotten to see the person you are. Quirky, sassy, quick to learn and eager to please, desperate for my touch and body close to yours still, able to convey your emotions and wants. And now, you keep me company. We have real conversations. You tell me what you want, I ask you a question and you can answer, you tell me how you feel and we express our love for each other with words. You love to ask me to make horse/pig/ghost/fish/monkey/cat,etc sounds. You tell me which songs you want to hear and must honestly tell me “thank you” 30 times a day.
At this point, Reeve, it’s hard to remember what life was like without you. A blur of new clothes and bars and going out and traveling. A life without meaning, all just leading towards Daddy then you…
This whole journey with you is a lesson and a test both. The good kind, not the scary kind. I’ve learned so much more from you than I could ever be able to teach you. My god, the way you just see life and run at it and laugh in it’s face…your enthusiasm and awe of those every day things I always forget to appreciate is inspiring. I just wish to be a better person, better mom, better friend, better human simply because you exist.
Pinkie Promise….Let’s always be best buddies. Let’s always cuddle like we do now. Let’s always have to be touching. Let’s always dance when we eat good food. Let’s always laugh at the word “GOPHER.” Let’s always love daddy. Let’s always sloppy kiss. Let’s always hold hands. Let’s always love and love and love each other.
Reeve Denver, I’ve loved you more this month than any other and more each day than just yesterday. My heart may explode…I just love you exactly the way you are.
To the moon & back,
Favorite things to do: throw your “men” around and make them fly, Army men, kick a football, pull your socks off, pull the Halloween stickers off the windows, look for ghosts, Cheers!!!, push-ups, flash cards, hang on things, going on hikes,
Favorite things to eat: spicy meat, yogurt, cheese sticks, grilled cheese w/ spinach
Dislikes: having to take “one last bite” to get a treat, being far away from Mommy, bare feet, wearing hats/hoodies
Funny Tricks: holding sippy cup to the side while drinking so doesn’t miss any things, Sweet Face, playing PeekABoo and saying “I see you,” asking “is it okay?” when knocks something over, running at the couch to jump up on it
Scary items: Halloween items like rats, bats and skeletons at the store that are realistic
Cute item: Spiderman shoes that light up, skateboard, your love for Batman pajamas,
Hair color: Surfer blond and everyone tells us you need a trim, but we don’t care what they think
Eye color: Everyone tells me they are the same color as mine (aqua-ish) but I see green like daddy’s
Clothing size: 2T
Diaper size: 4
Weight: probably 19-ish pounds
Teeth: 14. bottom incisors are still poking in and out
Funny Words (we counted over 350 including all 100 in your Word Book and flash cards, names, etc.
*San Diego (where Deklan was this month)
*sausage (shosh-shuj) (you crinkle your nose so cute….
*Cheeeeeez (when we take your picture, though I swear I would never have taught you this)
*Sharon/Amy/Melissa (the moms on the street)
*thank you (fank you)
*candy? cookie? sickle? …. all at once in reply to what you are hungry for, each followed by “no” from me
*bat signal (single)