A Painted House

Archive for April 2012

Dear Edison,

You’re seventeen months old and thankfully I can finally say you’re becoming well-read.  A couple of months ago I turned to your Dad and told him that I was afraid you were going to be unintelligent.  Not because of your genetics or a lazy predisposition or any lack of developmental milestones achieved, but because we rarely read to you.  By this age with your brother we were faithfully reading to him each night before bed but thanks to the compounded crazy that comes with simultaneously putting multiple children to bed, we’ve basically neglected your bedtime learning.  Yes, I put that in print, an Epic Parenting Fail.  Thankfully, God must have equipped not-first-born children with a junky parenting autocorrect feature.  Thus, you seem to have taken this portion of your development into your own hands.  At least a dozen times per day you bring one of us a book, also known as a “boo”, hold it up, and prompt us with your gigantic batting eyes, to keep you from having to repeat first grade.   And because you are simply irrisistable in nearly every way, we almost always pause what we’re doing, plop down on the floor, and read you that book.  And then the next and the next until you’ve emptied the shelf.  With any luck you’re going to be brilliant after all Edison, and when you graduate from college at seventeen I will blot out this paragraph so your Dad and I can take total credit for fostering your gigantic brains at an early age.

So, natural segues aside, let’s talk about Elmo.  Edison, you LOVE Elmo.  Funny enough, I don’t know that you’ve ever actually watched Sesame Street but you can spot that little red booger everywhere we go.  When I take you garage-saling from house to house I may be looking for kids clothes and cute home décor, but you’re hunting Elmo.  And each and every time you spot him on a book, toy, or most exciting, in bodily form on a table, you point your little finger and shout his name with glee.  Do you have any idea how much self control it takes not to fill this house with as many Elmo-emblazened things as it can contain just because it causes you so much joy?  But I can’t.  I won’t.  And not just because you need to learn about good money management or living without excess stuff…..you know, lessons totally appropriate to seventeen months.  Sweetheart, I love you with all my being but I find Elmo so.stinking.annoying.  I’m sorry.  I’ll try harder to accept your friends.

A character obsession I can get behind is “Baa” and “Awwy”, also known as Bob and Larry of Veggie Tales fame.  Your ferver for Elmo is only equally matched by your devotion to “Veggies”.  You ask for them all the time, all the time, all the time.  You bring me the DVD cases, point at the TV, and rub your hand across your tummy to sign “please”.  (At which point I turn into a puddle.)  And while I don’t condone letting one’s toddler waste away in front of the TV, especially if his reading time is questionable, Baa and Awwy have such good things to say about how God wants us to live and how special you are, that you get away with a lot more screen time than you probably should.  And you are so very special, Edison.  You melt my heart with your tiny voice and your beautiful eyes and snuggly little body that you cuddle up next to me on the couch.  Otherwise questionable parenting be darned; there’s no chance that you will disappear into the second/middle child black hole claimed by so many kids in your family position.  There is a unique, gigantic, Edison-shaped place in my heart that belongs solely to you.  And I’m thankful every morning when I peek into your room and see you waiting for me, bouncing and giggling in your crib, that God chose not to leave it empty but instead to fill it to overflowing with my love for you.

Love,  Mama

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