Thursday, July 17, 2008

Happy Month 35!

Dear Connor,

A few days ago, you turned 35 months old. And from the get-go, this was one of those really incredible months. For starters, you solidly have the concept of "if I stay up late, I should sleep late the next morning". This is a lesson that I never would've guessed one had to learn, but alas, you used to wake up early regardless of when you went to bed. For the most part, this completely stunk from my point of view. Because sometimes, when you are up late, I am also up late, and I am well versed in the idea of sleeping in if I go to bed late. Thank you Connor, for sleeping in on several occasions.

It was also a special month because you set a goal, and have made great strides in trying to attain it. A few weeks ago, you announced to me that you wanted to go off the diving board. I explained to you that you needed to be able to swim the width of the pool to go off the diving board. What I did not explain to you, was that you swimming the width of the pool at your age is completely insane. Why? Because all of your life you will be told "no" and told you can't do various things, and I while I don't want to set you up for disappointment, I also don't want to say negative things if there's even a chance you could do it.

After our conversation, you went from hesitating to submerge your head into water to full on swimming under water - for one breath, that is. You stand on the steps of our pool and motion for me to back up so you can swim to me. You often tell me to "go all he way because I can swim across the pool now". But, because I do not want you to drown, I only step about 5 feet away. This is about the distance you can go once you push off the steps of the pool and I reach my arms towards you.

And this isn't the only swimming milestone you accomplished this month. You also got out of the pool and dove in head first before a lifeguard or I could tell you not to, and you paddled your float all the way to the deep end of the pool on "float day" and then had me catch you as you jumped off the side of the pool. While on vacation, you pretended the docks were diving boards and you leaped into your dad's arms.

Daddy pulled a few strings while on vacation, and you got to ride with him on an actual train that carries produce from Washington state to New York. You even blew the whistle. This is remarkable not only because most children your age do not get to do this, but you became terrified of loud noises this month so it is nothing short of amazing that you blew a whistle you knew was very, very loud. Thank you, James, for scoring this adventure for Connor. As you predicted, he's still talking about it a week later.

You also caught your first fish, thanks to Uncle Rick. You went to the lake armed with your fishing pole and your dad and you spent a fair amount of time fishing off the docks. I use the term fishing rather loosely here, because what you were actually doing was dangling worms off the hook on your pole and feeding the fish below, who were not about to be caught by the likes of you. When you did finally catch a fish (with only a couple of worms to spare), you seemed a bit disappointed that it wasn't large enough to feed the entire family dinner for the night. You correctly pointed out that it was much bigger than Connor fish. Seeing your disappointment at the notion of having to toss back your prize, I explained to you that catching a baby fish was the best kind of fish to catch because you had just fed it a nice big worm and that would help it grow bigger so we could eat it next year when you caught it again. This explanation satisfied you so much that every time you tell anyone about the fish you caught, you immediately told them it was a baby fish, but Mommy said this was the best kind of fish... I'm not sure if you're trying to get someone to confirm to you that I am nuts or if you found the argument so convincing that you want to make sure they know it as well. Either way, you seem pretty happy about the situation.

After a day of getting used to your new surroundings (during which you had not one, not two, but three 'accidents' and I thought I was going to burst a gasket if I had to find you clean underwear one more time), you were an absolute joy on vacation. It was great fun to watch you and your cousins play together. You introduced them to our game "music class", which provided lots of fun for everyone, or at least for Kate and Alisa. The three of you swam, danced, climbed, and occasionally sat still. That last feat was the most impressive.

Your have pretty much gotten over your deathly fear of drains, though I must assure you that everything that looks like a drain at the pool is a filter, or you will still sit there and freak out when toys go near it thinking they are disappearing. Remind me to punch Judith Viorst in the face should I ever meet her. Did she not realize when she wrote that Alexander's marble went down the drain that she would cause kids like you incredible distress? Of course, just as soon as the drain fear has been mostly calmed, you decided you were afraid of loud noises. Awesome. Just in time for fireworks. Why is it again, that we celebrate independence by blowing crap up? I look forward to whatever part of life you decide to obsess over in the future, Connor. It keeps me on my toes.


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