Last week Nathan hit a growth spurt. His cheeks are filling out and he's staying awake for longer periods of time. His eyes travel the distance of the room, lingering on our faces - learning. We've all hit a bit of growth spurt around here - learning just who we are as a family of four. And, as always, Audrey had a few things to teach us this week as well.
When potty-training Audrey, we set an alarm that would go off every thirty minutes or so. We would ask Audrey to go potty when the alarm went off. Usually focused on a task, she would often tell us that she didn't want or have to go. We would tell her that she had to go, the alarm had gone off. On Monday, Audrey asked me to play with her. I told her I would, but first I had to go potty. "Did the alarm go off?" she asked.
Later, I gave her chap stick to apply. I saw her put it on her lips. She asked me why God made chap stick. "To protect your lips," I said.
A few moments passed. Then she said, "I put some on my tongue. To protect it."
Audrey's Grammy stayed Tuesday night to help out and play with the kids. I told Audrey that the next morning she had school and needed to move quickly so we would be on time. The next morning, she remembered that it was her day to go to school. "I have to hurry," she told Grammy. After a moment she said, "I have to HURRY!" and began running frantically around the house as if the meaning had just hit her.
Wednesday at dinner Audrey wanted a brownie. While she asked nicely, she forgot to say please. Jason said, "You did a good job asking, but you forgot one thing."
Audrey looked squarely at Jason and said, "What do I gotta do?"
Thursday, Audrey asked me, "Do you love me?"
"I love you so much!" I said.
"Oh, that's great," she said, as cheerfully as she had asked.
And, I do. And, it does feel great. I find myself smiling and laughing in spite of my lack of sleep or energy or free time. We are just a little family - just one among millions. All things considered, we are not that special. But each of us is growing - learning to focus or smile; learning to be the patient big sister; learning to adjust to the faster pace of parenting for two - learning and laughing. And, that - that is very special.