I need a minute to absorb this. Wasn’t it just yesterday I was excited that he gave me his first real, non-gas smile? Didn’t he just learn to sit up on his own? Apparently not, but it sure feels like it.
You know how every year on January 1st you wonder how long it will take you to get used to saying the New Year? Well, that is what it feels like for me when it comes to Aiden’s age. I am just getting used to saying that Aiden is over the age of one and now his second birthday is just around the corner.
It doesn’t really matter if I am mentally prepared for it or not, my baby boy is growing up. Fast. His first word, at eight-and-a-half months, was ‘mom.’ Mom has since turned into mama and he likes to greet me with hello and goodbye. He seems to say a new word everyday and even tries his best to sing with me. He doesn't really know the words and it mostly comes out in toddler talk, but 'You Are My Sunshine' has never sounded sweeter.
Little things about Aiden’s behaviour amaze me lately. Just last week when we were out running errands, I gave him a snack. He ate the snack and then walked over to the garbage and put the wrapper in the bin. He didn’t stop there - he made sure to wipe the crumbs off his little fingers as well. Then he said, “yuck” and walked away. I was so proud of him!
I had never taught him to put things in the garbage, yet there he was, doing exactly that. It just goes to show that he is learning by observation. Mind you, at home he may pour out a full container of puffs just so he can put the container in the garbage (and he certainly didn’t learn that from me), but he has good intentions.
The past few mornings upon waking, I have seen Aiden take his blanket and put it over his little Glow Worm toy in his bed. He then kisses the Glow Worm, turns on the lullaby on his CD player and walks out of the room, closing the door behind him. It was so touching to see, I almost cried. Why? Because that is exactly what I do every night when I put him to bed. Coincidence? Not likely.
Aiden is like a little sponge, absorbing his surroundings everyday. He is learning when I read him storybooks and sing the alphabet. He is learning when Mommy tells him NO after he tries to colour the wall or drink toilet water. I am teaching him even when I don’t even realize it. That is why I have to be careful in his presence because I know I always have two little eyes watching and ears listening.
Even though he may seem like he is growing up too fast, Aiden is only 21 months old and has a lifetime of growing left to do. As a parent, it is my job to teach him right from wrong, among other things. As his Mommy, I will also guide, love and cheer him on through the years. I'll be there with him every step of the way, doing the same thing, learning as we grow.
Sonya Thorne lives in Truro. Her column appears regularly in the Truro Daily News.