Feb. 18, Feast of the Seven Founders of the Order of Servites.
"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014."
Afon: caught in the middle of a chuckle. Quick to laugh, quick to cry, my boy is.
Last week Afon turned three years old. He got this John Deere hat (pictured below) about a week ago today as an early birthday present and likes it so much he refuses to be without it. He falls asleep in it, and when I take it off of him, he wakes in the middle of the night and cries to have it.
I watch him with his precious hat. He puts his hand up to the bill and adjusts it. Takes it on and off to pat down his dampened curls. It's a new phenomenon, this motion of himself on himself. As a toddler of two, he acted upon things in his environment; but he was less likely to adjust his shirt or put on socks. Even brushing his teeth and feeding himself was fumbling and babyish. Now I am astonished to find how at home he is in his own body, how he commands it to do his bidding. It's just part of the long separation, between him and me. When we stopped nursing, it was a landmark. But it has only now become very present to me, this awareness that he is less and less part of my body; and the gap between when he lived inside me grows larger and longer.
We had a birthday party for him; and because I love St. Valentine's Day and I suspect that next year he will be willful and insistent enough to suggest his own, I made that the theme. Oh, but he enjoyed himself! He's been singing Happy birthday . . . to . . . yooou ever since.
Happy birthday boy, happy birthday boy! In the sweetest voice!