Friday, December 14, 2012

Letting go

Luke is quickly approaching his 2nd birthday and I can already see the "terrible" and the "terrific" emerging.  I have noticed that people watch me when Luke is crying on the floor as if to say "Why don't you pick him up?  He's crying!  He has Down syndrome!  He doesn't know what he's doing!"  Slow down, I want to say.  He knows EXACTLY what he is doing.  That cry?  That is because I took that piece of paper away from him.  That rolling and fussing on the floor?  That's because I just put a hat on him and he doesn't want to wear it.  He may not speak yet, but don't let that fool you.  He is an almost-two-year-old who is throwing fits when he doesn't get his way, just like all other almost-two-year-olds do.

I remember the best advice I got when I was pregnant. It was, of course, from my own mother. She said, "Don't ever get too comfortable. As soon as you have entered one phase and feel like you have it figured out, a new one will begin." (Or something close to that) What I love, and despise, about this advice is that it is true for the phases that are frustrating (kids that won't sleep, or eat the food you want them to), but it also holds true for the phases that you love and want to hold onto forever (rocking your baby to sleep, or a cute bear crawl).

Luke is taking more and more steps every day, and has no problem pushing me away if he doesn't want help or getting between me and a toy if he wants to do it himself.  I love his fierce independence and I know it is going to serve him well as he continues to grow.  As usual, it's not going to be Luke that has a problem letting go, it's going to be me.

We are quickly approaching a very new phase for our family.  Kindergarten. 

Yes, I realize you all read the post about how Gwen and Colin are going to Kinderhaus together and how great it was to see them heading off to school together.  That was all true and wonderful while it lasted, but like all phases, it was over as quickly as it began.  It has nothing to do with these two siblings getting along, and it has everything to do with the different needs of my 3 year old and my 6 year old.

So ... in the spirit of letting go, I had to look at Gwen and realize that she was ready for a different adventure.


We are enjoying the advent season of preparing for Christmas.  This is one season that can't be rushed, even if you try.  The kids want to take down 2 numbers on the advent calendar, but I have to explain that Christmas won't come any sooner by doing that.  It is a season of waiting and anticipating.

One of our favorite traditions that began when we moved to Decorah was cutting our own Christmas tree.  The first year it was FREEZING cold and snowy, and I was pregnant with Luke.  The second year it was freezing rain and also freezing cold.  This year was perfect.  Not too cold.  No snow, although I would have preferred to trudge through at least a few inches of snowy white!  The kids enjoyed helping Daddy carry the saw and would have pulled the tree themselves if it hadn't been SO big and heavy!  And for the record, no, it did not fit easily in our house.  It never looks that big until you are looking at your front door ;)  One year we will get it right!
Pictures from the past:
December 2010 - Kids are 2 and 4, and I am 8 months pregnant with Luke
 Happy Advent and Merry Christmas!