I shared this photo on Instagram the other day and wrote: “I want to freeze time right here, just like this.” Drew had just given Jackson a bath, as he does almost every night, and I was out on the terrace squeezing in a little more work before my energy for the day finally gave way to heat and rosé. After he got dressed in his PJs, Jackson came out to say goodnight to me, first curling up right beside me on the glider. “Can I have one kiss?” I asked, and he obliged, saying, “I love you, Mommy.” And for once, he was saying it just to say it and not because he had an ulterior motive (candy, iPad time, TV, “just let me out of my room I’m not going to take a nap!”). Then he got up and moved to the chair where he sat smiling at me for a few minutes. “I like it,” he said. “I do, too,” I replied. And then I took this picture.
And I do like it. I like how he is these days (for the most part), and, for the most part, I like how I am with him. We have an easier relationship. I think a big part of the easier way of things lately is that I am understanding him better. When he started reading a couple months ago, it was like a light bulb went off. His brain is just different than mine. He’s reading sentences now. He’s spelling words I didn’t know he even knew. He doesn’t just count his numbers, he spells each number. He pointed to a stop sign the other day and said, “That’s an octagon.” “What does that mean?” I asked him. “A shape with eight sides,” he replied.
He is endlessly curious and loves learning — is obsessed with learning. I don’t know what — if anything — this means for his future, but I do know that finally understanding and appreciating his emerging skills and interests has made a big, big difference. I think this is probably true of most parents who begin noticing and appreciating and fostering their kids’ own unique skills and interests. It has made things easier and more fun. And before there are new challenges, before he stops wanting to curl up next to me to say good-night, before I start losing him little by little to the world and all the things there are to learn about it, I want more time right here, just like this. Because I like it.
I hope you are liking your right now, too. What are you up to this weekend?