Monday, December 12, 2005

the wave

Sometimes I feel like this blog is an outlet for my annoyances about motherhood. All the complaining about post-baby hair loss and terrible memory (mine), and the constant pooping (his) must make me sound an ungrateful wench. Which, let’s face it, sometimes I am. But sometimes I sit back and reflect on how I feel like I’m the luckiest person in the world.

Case in point: Evan recently learned how to wave. For the last few days, we’ve been sitting there and waving our arms frantically, saying “hi!” and “bye bye!” in those ridiculously chirpy tones that new parents innately use. Recently, during this embarrassing charade, he lifted up his arm and flopped it up and down a couple of times. I think he realized immediately that he was on to something, because we erupted into cheers and applause as if he had just won the Nobel Peace Prize, found a cure for cancer or even just emptied his own Diaper Champ. He broke into a huge grin and began flapping that arm up and down some more. Now, after a little practice, it takes only one or two loud “bye-byes” and a couple of small waves on our part to get him going.

I have no idea if a baby’s first wave is that much of an emotional event for other parents, but I was dumbfounded. It struck me that I am raising a real live human being here. He’s no longer a little blob. He is an ACTUAL PERSON who is learning how to COMMUNICATE. This parenting thing is really amazing, but is an unbelievable responsibility. I felt pure joy when I saw that wave. But afterward, it mixed with a little bit of fear, because now I have to be a good example. He is watching what I do and mirroring it. Now I don’t just have to take care of his basic physical needs. I also have to do my best not to screw him up! It really is an awesome responsibility.

But it is a responsibility that comes with so many rewards. People tell you about this before you have kids, but it’s hard to really get it. I know that I really truly did not understand. I honestly never thought seeing a little hand bobbing up and down would make my eyes well up with tears. It did, and for the first time made me feel like a real parent.

Although this real parent thinks it would rock if he could empty the Diaper Champ just once.

5 comments:

Carolyn said...

It's funny how the littlest things make you so proud as a mom, isn't it? And it's just the beginning!

And I'm totally with you on the responsibility thing. I've always said it's easy to be a parent. It's hard to be a good parent. The other day, I was standing on a stool trying to decorate our tree. A little while later, my 3 1/2 year old tried to climb on it and I told her to get down. She responded by saying, "But you taught me this." Scary.

undercover celebrity said...

Sweet little Evan. You really must post more photos of him.

melissa.in.london said...

Awww!! My nephew is 17 months old, and he's so precocious it's ridiculous. He wags his finger during his Mom's rendition of 5 Little Monkeys. He does the itsy-bitsy spider. He shakes his head no if he doesn't want something.

A year ago I never imagined he'd be doing all this--it's great. The smallest little things that they do are so cute. Granted, it'll probably be magnified when it's my kid, but he amazes me.

(As does my niece who'se 19 months. Since they started walking it's more and more clear that they ARE in fact little people. Wow.)

shannon said...

Oh, that's too cool. Must teach my baby that one. We're only on the silly grin stage currently. :)

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star said...

Okay, don't tell anyone, but that blog makes me want to become a parent way sooner than planned. I'M welling up an he's not even my baby!