"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."
The title--neither the date posted nor the day taken, but the week out of the 52 in a year. Since I joined after the project already started, I was making the date of upload the title of these posts, but I've lost my focus with that this past week, so I'll just shift over to what everyone else is doing. Unfortunately, this is not the 26th deliberate portrait of my child I've taken this year. But I'm sure I could find that many if I tried. c;
Trains were our first love. Even though after we got big enough to go on the tractor with Grandaddy, that is now our favorite obsession. We don't even know the glories that await us one day soon when we will ride the train in Wales.
Tah-tee, he calls it. It means "tractor," but it goes for anything that's not an obvious civilian car. His fingers are scrapped up badly because while we out for one of our morning walks, he in his stroller, he put his hands down between his knees to touch the trailing ground and the skin of his knuckles skid over the rough concrete. Oh, he wailed! But I didn't baby him because I had been telling him not to do that for the past several days. And I don't want him to look to me to fix things, no matter how much I may want to wave a wand and make things better. I want him to feel secure and loved, know that I will be there for him, but I don't want to create a false expectation of my omnipotence. It will be too painful for him the day he finds out that it's not true. Better to rely on himself, his own ingenuity, and God. And know that I will love him and love him so that he'll have all the strength he needs.
So much revelation this week. I feel like it's a revealing, an un-veiling. Last week, I talked about becoming, but I don't think that's accurate. My son is himself. He always was, even before he could express that identity through the accustomed outlets. Certainly things I do and say and teach him influence his growth, but only in the way, I believe, that the sun draws the face of the flower toward it or the wires guide the ivy over cracked bricks. I don't believe in predestination, but I do know enough of life's mystery to respect that nobody, not even I, will ever be able to completely fathom him. I need to take time to widen my eyes and take in who and what he is. He's not me, or my perception of him. He exists apart from myself. It could easily dissolve into a moment of panic for me. What if he's not like me at all--what if he is exactly the opposite of who I am or what I want for him? But that's what makes him wonderful. He's really real, and whole, and separate. I can't predict him; the best I can know of him is what he has done yesterday.
He's coloring inside the lines; I'm astounded at this development. He's still rough at it, but the deliberateness is obvious. He drew a heart, angular, like something you'd make on a calculator, but it was unmistakable. He pointed at it and called it "kia" (his word for "heart").
Middle of last week, he clambered onto my kitchen island/work stand/counter thing and pulled off the ceramic bowl full of sponge sitting out to become plump dough. He got it in his hair, on the carpet, on the pillows, table . . . everywhere. I was so cross with him, and then he kept walking in the spilled dough on the ground and trailing gooey footprints around the apartment. I kept telling him to "stay away," but his curiosity drove him back. At last I shouted, and he stood still, trembled his lower lip into a frown, and sobbed. That melted my frigid heart! After all, he's not doing it to be bad. I do need to teach him to mind me, to obey Mama while his own sense of what is good for him is undeveloped; but I don't want him to ever a deep personal pain of rejection, not for anything.
Happy birthday, little lamb! I can't believe her mum captured such a vibrant moment. And water babies! This BLUE.
See more lovely Project 52 portraits at Che and Fidel.