There were moments today when I forgot that my second born son is the Loud One. He says a lot of “dat” and “gah” and “nahnahnah” but when his older brother is not around, he feels no need to yell any of it.
Not that his older brother is the cause of the yelling. An older brother is someone who was there first, who has marked this territory, who has been peeing on your mother longer than you’ve been alive. How are you going to set yourself apart, little brother? How are you going to make sure they don’t leave you in the corner to teach yourself how to crawl while they giggle over old videos and trim the older brother’s toenails with a pair of safety scissors. On you they use a rusty knife. You know you have to make your case.
Trombone is away, on vacation at my parents’ house and Fresco and I have spent some time, one-on-one, without the clamouring of schedules and those pesky Other Peoples’ Needs. Clean diaper, shoes in the bottom of the buggy, hat in my purse, let’s go. We’ll walk till we want to stop. Greet the cats at the cat lady’s house. Amble. Have some water. Splash in the water park. Swing until you don’t want to swing anymore. When it’s time to go, the 13.5 month old doesn’t know how to protest. He just goes with the flow. If he objects, hand him a stick. By the time he has figured out he can’t consume it, you’ll be home drinking a cold beer.
It is delicious to only have to meet the needs of two people, one of whom doesn’t ask for much, just a quick internet check periodically and a good cup of coffee or two. It is easier, too. And so, less shouting. By the kid, by me. Less mauling of my limbs.
When I talked to Trombone on the phone yesterday, his voice sounded so young. He is only not yet three. I do miss him, the real him, not the him that I spend every day with but the him that I used to spend every day with.
And then I went and read this post and I realized that I can spend time with him, just him. And I should. And I will.