Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Well, yes. I think I will.

   Cooper was miserable last night. He kept me up. He couldn't sleep without his dad being part of the nightly routine. Normally I change diaper and get Coop in jammies and into the bedroom while Brandon washes his cup and gets him milk. Then we lay down in Cooper's bed and he tells us all about his day while we tuck him in and get his pillows. Next come hugs and kisses, and then we close the door and he goes to bed. It didn't happen without Brandon last night. I tried. Cooper was upset. We ended up cuddled on the couch watching movies last night talking about how Daddy will be home soon. Even the movie was different. Usually Cooper is wedged between us or sitting on Brandon's lap. Cooper is only a Momma's boy when he's upset.
   We finally fell asleep on the couch and I woke up with horribly sore hips a couple hours later from having a toddler sprawled out on top of me in our sinky couch. I got up and moved us into my bed and tried to get some sleep while I could, but it's just no right without Brandon in bed. I know I'm being whiny, and he's only been gone one night, but it's bumming me out.
   This morning Cooper was MAD. He was demanding to know where his dad was. I made him some waffles that he normally shares with Brandon, and we sat on the couch talking about how Daddy has to stay away for just a little while so that he can get to work, but that soon we're going to have a car and then Daddy will be home all the time and Cooper and I will go do lots of fun stuff during the day. That seemed to calm him down. Maybe I'm putting too much stock in his cognitive abilities, but it seems like when I explain things to him, he functions better. There is no, "Because I said so!" in this house. He's only two, so who knows. Maybe I'm just doing the whole parenting thing all wrong at this point, and expecting him to understand too much. He's just so smart. I worry I get ahead of him though.
   I've been thinking about good summer activities for him, and I was looking into swimming lessons at the YMCA once a week with me, and a toddler Spanish class two days a week for a couple hours without me. The swimming lessons would be free if I got a family membership to the Y, and I could take a prenatal water aerobics class there as well, and we could go swimming with Morgan and Allison all the time. I just don't know if he's old enough to coordinate his body for actual swimming? The Spanish class is a couple hours, and it's not really a class as much as an immersion program for toddlers in his age group. They play games and have music and story time all in Spanish. It's a pretty popular program, but I don't want to stick him in something he's not ready for. There are a couple other programs I've looked at, like a tot soccer team, and guitar lessons, because he's OBSESSED with music and his little guitar. He wants to do karate, but there are no under 4 classes, so we'll wait and see if he's still interested when the time comes. I wrote off guitar lessons for now because that just seems so advanced, but if he's still so completely invested in music when he's a little older, I'll get him in the kindergarten after school classes for sure. There's a local school that does them.
   He has an abundance of energy, and I want to make sure he can explore things he's interested in, and have positive outlets starting at a young age so he knows how to direct his focus and can find things he loves to do. As a kid, especially in high school, there were a lot of my classmates that got into trouble or did stupid things because they were so apathetic to everything. I mean, I got in my share of trouble, but I had my baking and public speaking, and that's where I directed the majority of my energy when I was in my hometown. When I was little I played T-ball, soccer, softball, and took dance, and it was really good for me. I want to give Cooper those opportunities to experience stuff like that as well. It's so much harder to dive into new things when you're older and have established patterns of  behavior. It's scary to try new things some times. I want him to know that it's better to cannon ball in and do the best you can and have fun.
   I feel like I sound like a nut. I don't care. I'm not trying to prime him for fame or make him perfect or anything. I'm not going to be a nutso stage mom. I'm trying to give him good childhood experiences that support as much positive development as possible, and foster his interests so that he always know that what he cares about matters and is relevant and valid in our lives. While he's little it's harder because I have to find things for him, but once he's bigger I want him to know he can come to me and say, "Hey mom, I think I want to try ______." I'll do what I can and make it happen.
   Rant over, I guess. I need food.

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