Thursday, June 14, 2012

kiddo update

allow me to reset a bit.  when i started this blog, i had four boys...and they were kind of little.  but my family has size as well as stature...

 this is a picture of my first born, my fourth born, and my second born sons.  (we're big mario fans here...)  anyway, my oldest is seventeen.  he'll be eighteen at the end of the summer.  he's grown and struggled and made some pretty awful choices, but he is still good on the inside.  he's struggling with being cool and being good...with being popular and being true to himself...with being separate from us while still respecting us...with choosing his values and not throwing out stuff just because we value it, too.  he still plays guitar, is still active at church, loves football and baseball and track, absolutely ROCKED his sat, and likes hanging out with his friends.  he also still forgets to let us know when he gets where he's going, spends too much time on the computer, and leaves his room a disgusting mess (although he shares with second born, and they always argue over who's really the messy will be interesting after we move because they will have separate rooms for the first time).  oh, and do you know what he does that really drives me crazy?  he washes whites WITH darks.  ugh...have i taught that child nothing?  i love that first born son of mine...but i also like when he's gone.  i worry about him a lot, but also know he's going to be fine.  i know he is so smart, but i also know he is not finished making dumb mistakes.  he is so like me.

this is my second born. he is my mini me. only he's not mini to me...he's about five inches taller than me, although we only tell people he's six feet tall. when they ask if that's all, we tell him we only measure up to six feet at fourteen years old...when he's sixteen, we'll see how much over six feet he is. his hair has only continued to get wilder and curlier. sometimes i wish he'd just let it dread, but i'm pretty sure it would give my husband many problems. which means second born would never do it. he's just that kind of guy. he is a peacekeeper through and through. but not the martyr, give himself an ulcer trying to keep everyone happy sort of peacekeeper. he makes a choice and lives with it. which is not to say he's never angry. but he's just an easy going, kind hearted, gentle person. he likes rock climbing a lot, plays the piano often, likes magic the gathering and video games. he is also awesome with his little sister...which is pretty special...but i'll get to her later. this guy is like me in so many ways, but he's so much smarter and wiser and more grounded. i often tell my husband i want to be him when i grow up

this is my third born and my daughter.  i don't have a lot of pictures of him, which i will work on because he is just beautiful.  he's always had this very interesting face to look at.  he's also my most sensitive...which means he finds offense in a number of things, but it also means he easily forgives and loves fiercely.  he is really, really smart.  he reads voraciously, also rock climbs, also loves piano and magic the gathering. he likes to cook, too.  he is the quickest to hide something or change his story to get out of consequences, and i suspect he does that because he knows he can.  he's the third and the one we don't watch as closely.  this has fostered a lot of independence in him that is really neat to watch and has served him very well.  but he's also one i tend to try to connect with when i can because i know we need it.  he'll be thirteen at the start of this school year...yikes!  three teenagers!

my fourth born and youngest son, my eight year old, is in the middle in the first picture.  that kid is just pure.  he's one of the most honest, most delightful kids you'll meet.  he's also a little on the lazy side, but he does have three big brothers that go before him, so why do it if they will?  he has a question for any quiet moment..."mama, what was your favorite toy growing up?", "mama, did you like ice cream when you were little?", "mama, did we all say 'no' like our little sister does?"  he will talk about anything and everything.  the other night he asked me if God was real and how did i know?  and then we proceeded to talk about it for an hour.  (which was remarkable considering he asked at midnight)  he's also my insomniac and he has stomach issues.  i'm considering having him tested for celiac, but not until we move.  he rock climbs, plays piano, loves magic the gathering...see a pattern?  he also has a special bond with his sister.  he was the only one who insisted she was a girl the whole time i was pregnant.  he was there when she was born (as was my twelve year old).  and she trusts him deeply.

and, so, speaking of the girl, she is two now.  she has more personality that i ever recall her brothers having.  she is more independent, stubborn, strong-willed, and exhausting than i recall any of them ever being until they were seven.  she has opinions on everything.  she can be alternately maddening and charming and the sweetest thing ever.  she is so smart about people.  and she is so observant.  she is madly devoted to her babies for about two days, and then throw them over to gorge on caillou and her brothers.  she loves just about anything...singing, reading, television, arts and crafts, painting.  we've been in vacation bible school this week and she wakes up ready to go and very, very excited about everything they do every morning.  some days i wonder how we've made it this far with her and other days i wonder how we ever lived without her.  she is humbling and i am a better person for having her and growing alongside her.  we all are.

and those are my guys.  having the oldest go through some rough patches was a humbling sign post that we are not immune or perfect.  that nothing we have done or will do will ever keep us from hurting or watching each other hurt.  and when they say kids are your heart walking around on the outside, they are not joking.  and there is nothing harder than watching your heart hurt itself.  but having made it through these first seventeen (almost eighteen...ack!) years together, i have faith we are going to be fine, heal, grow, and love.



*Jess* said...

oh, that last picture just makes me smile!!

JO said...

Your children are all beautiful. And my children (and I) miss them (and you) very much!!

I know what you mean about Baby Girl. My Baby Girl is the same way and was from birth. I never believed that boys and girls could be quite so different, but, oh my, they are. They are.

I would like to hug each and every one of you. If we can ever get our pool clean and ready for swimming, maybe you all can come and visit?