I hadn’t wanted the Christmas vacation to end…I hadn’t wanted everyone to leave, signalling my return to adulthood and the reality that there was no one other than me that was going to actually clean the house and do the shopping, the cooking, the scheduling, etc. No more cookies. No more sleeping until 8:30. No more lego marathons with Henry. And when I say “with” Henry, I actually mean I pretty much have a lego marathon all by myself.
Henry: Hey Mom, want to do legos with me?
Me: Okay! We could have a lego marathon!
Me: We could build the entire Christmas village!
We begin to build, sorting through thousands and thousands of legos as we go. And then Henry says “Hey Mom? I think I’m going to take a break.”
“Okay Buddy!” I say.
Only he never returns.
So I spend the next 4 1/2 hours finishing the kit all by myself. And then, the next day, Henry says to me
Hey Mom, today let’s do legos all day!
Me: You said that yesterday, Henry.
Henry: No but today I really want to!
And then once I’d tasted the lego elixir, he “took another break.” Suckered. So basically I built the whole entire lego Christmas village over a three day period. And with little assistance, I might add. Anyway…
Henry was sitting next to me last night, reading. I looked at him, and ran my fingers through his hair. I remembered the first book I read to him after he got his hearing aids. He was a toddler. It was only then that I knew why he had hated reading at bedtime…he couldn’t have heard the words before.
I thought about his red curls. And before he had freckles, the ivory of his skin, how soft it was. And how round his cheeks were. And his little fat belly. We used to call him Pork Chop. I remembered how afraid I was of what lay ahead for him. I thought his hearing aids would be a stumbling block. Someone once said “the difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is how you use them.” And I realized it then…
I am not afraid for him anymore.