Since September, I have had been spending Sundays with my son. We are often alone, hanging out in the house or running errands together. He is nearing seven and a half, and I am finding that he’s maturing into an actual person right now, as in a person I want to spend time with, one who can be patient with my need to do work, one who can disappear into his corner of the house for a while and can even toast a waffle for himself without waking up either of his parents. This kid is learning to navigate his tiny universe without needing mom and dad each moment – and often preferring not to have us around 24/7.
He is reading like a madman, too, devouring chapter books with such titles as I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, I Survived Pearl Harbor, I Survived a Grizzly Bear Encounter, and you see where I am going. He even has a genre.
Tonight, while reading about the bear encounter, he read each small “shk” of the rattlesnake’s rattling sound. He’s in it to win it. Fully committed to the entire experience. Picture, if you will for a moment, a small finger running beneath each “shk.”
This is one thing I love so much about him.
When he is not reading someone’s survival story, he’s reading a graphic novel of Poe’s greatest hits, such as “The Raven” and “The Telltale Heart.” He eats up anything slightly horrifying or gruesome, especially if blood and ghosts are involved. My husband and I question if he will be the next Stephen King (or possibly Indiana Jones if going with the survival stuff).
Today, he read me some Poe and then we did some Mad Libs. We’re sort of becoming buds. I mean, we were always buds, but our time together feels more like time together, existing in the same space, having exchanges about why dad and I don’t eat sugar or that being sick means mom needs another hour on the couch. “I know,” he says about me feeling ill. “I understand, mom.” and then his mind takes him wandering into the piano room to look for something.
And when I mentioned disapproval about my mom’s dear friend missing Thanksgiving with us this year, he says, “Well, at least you have me, Mom. I’ll be there.”
I’ll be there, too, sweet boy. Carve me in for every Sunday from now until eternity.