Every night on my way to bed I stop in the Wildman’s room. I have to make sure he’s still covered up and that neither he nor his pillows have fallen on the floor. I’ve done this every single night for going on eight years and I can’t go to sleep if I haven’t looked in on my boy first. There have been nights I’ve gotten downstairs, fed the cat and put the dogs in bed, I’m all snuggled up under my quilt with the tv on some random true crime or history channel show and then it hits me – I didn’t check in on the boy. So I have to get out of bed, run upstairs and go look at him.
Yes, I admit, I’m more than a little OCD, and part of it is that my routine isn’t complete if I haven’t checked on him. But more than that it’s because I love to look at him when he’s sleeping. He’s fairly still and quiet and he’s just so precious at that moment. I can tell him I love him and kiss his cheeks without him pulling away. The older he gets, the harder it is to be able to do that during waking hours.
And his waking hours aren’t all joy and sunshine anymore. He can be a little smart-mouth, and he seems to want to push Mommy’s buttons more often than not these days. He and Daddy butt heads, and he already shows signs of the independent, opinionated young man he’ll be before we know it. We know he gets these traits from us, but that doesn’t mean we have to like it from our son, right?
But it is in those precious, sleeping moments every night, I recall how much I love everything about him.
I love those slightly salty, sweaty kisses I give him every night before I go to bed. (He’s sweaty, not me.) I love that he acts just like his daddy – even when they both drive me crazy.
I love that he loves popcorn as much as I do. I love that he loves his dog more than me. I love his sparkling brown eyes and that big dimple that captured my heart from day one. I love that he can’t tell a lie – at least not one that I can’t see right through.
I love that he loves to run and play and be outside in the sun. I love that he skates like the wind and can stop a puck. I love that he’s become a better student. I love that he shares my love of music and reading. I love that he has a sense of humor and his own sense of style. Yes, I love everything about him – even the unlovable parts, like his stinky socks and his dirty ears and underwear on the floor.
And most of all, I love that he’s my son.