12/31/2011

Oh, How They Grow

 I look at them, together, and am amazed. Bobby is 22 but looks 16 at the most. He's a few inches taller than me and a few inches shorter than his dad. Lil, at 10, is growing taller and curvier by the day. Already her feet and hands are longer than mine (of course mine are short and wide, so not hard to do), and she's only three inches shorter than me. Rosie is still so little next to them, but at 8 is beginning to grow out of sitting in my lap.
They are happy kids, still entwined in each other, loving to get together with their Nintendo DS and battle their pokemons with each other. The girls run to Bobby and ask for his help, constantly distracting him, but the sounds of their loud, animated conversations and infectious laughter is sweet to hear, even when it's frustrating because it's a school morning and we're trying to get them all out the door on time.

I don't know how they're going to change over the years, how far they'll go, what they'll do, but I'm enjoying the journey, even though it's filled with worry and anxiety. I want the best for them. I want them to be happy and of service. I have to stop to remind myself that they are. They're already there. Whatever else they do, wherever else they go, they are sweet people who care about others and want to be of help. 

Bobby's expanded Meals on Wheels to five days a week, and he's thrilled. We're building him up to being there volunteering 40 hours a week. We've switched the SPCA to Saturday, but have to work out the timing so he gets there when he can be let in. Last Saturday worked out, but this morning he knocked for over five minutes without getting in. No big deal; he and Rick are off running errands instead. I know he wanted to be with the cats, but he adjusts pretty well now to glitches.

He loves to paint and draw, so he got a new art set for Christmas. It's hard to tell, but I think he liked it best, although he was really thrilled with a huge skull wreath that lights up, too. He's a funny young man, and I love watching his interests change and expand. Get him paints or anything with a skull, and he's happy. Or Pokemon or Yu-gi-oh. He's generous, too, and spends his money on things for others. I'm proud to say I'm his mother.

If I had to describe my Lil in one word it would be exuberant. She does nothing halfway. From meltdowns to elation, she is fully into the moment. She cracks me up. She's smart and stubborn and yet has some gaps in what she understands so that you can't help but giggle, like the time she melted down because she had a math problem that wanted her to draw a rectangle 10 miles by 20 miles on a sheet of paper and she couldn't do it because it wouldn't fit. It's going to be such an interesting journey with her. She's spent the entire school year wearing Spongebob tees to school everyday, but hasn't worn Spongebob on break at all. She's saving them, she says. I'm just glad to see other clothes being worn.

Dreamy. That's Rosie. And a little secretive. She's got this little smile that lets you know she's holding back, keeping things to herself and she knows it. If she doesn't want to answer a question, you get that smile and no words. She still puts her shoes on the wrong feet and does it on purpose just to mess with people, namely me and her grandma. She carries a half dozen toys with her throughout the house, whatever is her favorite batch at the time. She's the baby of the house and knows it, revels in it.

They grow, even when it seems that progress is slow, like with the boy; they grow. The journey is not easy, but it's not meant to be. Learning that lesson, that sometimes things are hard, that's the lesson we have to learn: even when it's hard, even when it hurts, we have to keep going. We have to keep moving forward, and when we find ourselves treasuring all those moments, even those that hurt, we know we are on the right path: we are embracing our entire journey, and we, too, grow.

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