Sporting the double wide
This kid, this little slip of a personality, keeps us on our toes. From sun-up to sundown, and sometimes in the middle of the night. I love him so much, but oh my, we are so much alike that sometimes it feels as if we’re locked in a virtual arm wrestle, and it’s difficult to tell who is winning.
I’ve been thinking lately about what motivates my children, which is important when you are trying to get them moving, in any direction. Jackson is motivated by media (he will move heaven and earth to get his allotted 15 minutes of daily iPhone time), and Preston is motivated by treats. (Oh, the things he will do for a chocolate chip).
What motivates Addison? It took me a few days to figure that one out. Media not at all. Treats not so much. Fear of disappointing his parents? Nope. Then it hit me–ding! Winning. Being the best, the fastest, the first, having the biggest, getting the most. That kid has competition coursing through his veins. I can’t imagine where he gets it from.
When Addison was born the doctor sent him to get x-rayed because she was afraid his brain was swelling. When the report returned she told me, “It turns out, he just has a really large brain.” He said his first real words at 13 months. He was sitting in his high chair eating breakfast when he looked up at me and said, clear as day, “I’m all done.” He toddled around with a gleam in his eye (still does), standing in my dirt piles while I swept, drinking lotion straight from the tube, and dumping water bottles on the floor.
And yet he’s sweet as a sugar cube, and so mightily sensitive.
While playing tackle with Seth last week, his front teeth got knocked for about the thousandth time. But when he woke up Wednesday morning his right front tooth was practically falling out of his mouth. “Don’t touch it!” he cried. He couldn’t eat, he couldn’t drink, he couldn’t smile. It was only 6:45, but it was shaping up to be a long day. It reminded me of the hours I spent sitting on the bathroom counter as a child, letting those loose teeth just dangle.
So I chased Addison down the hall, tackled him on the couch (lovingly, of course), and said, “We’re pulling out that tooth now.” I gave it the tiniest of twists and out it came. Hysteria Boy transformed into the proud six-year-old. He took his tooth to school to show the entire class. He was, after all, the first one in his class to lose a top front tooth. The next day he bought lunch with his tooth fairy money. (Per tradition.)
And when he woke up Thursday morning, he marched right up to me, wiggled that other front tooth and said, “Mom, pull it. I want to buy ice cream tomorrow.”
That’s my boy.