I’ve started to notice that my biggest baby, really isn’t a baby anymore.
He doesn’t look like a baby. He doesn’t talk like a baby. He doesn’t play like a baby.
We’ve bypassed and moved beyond the terms of “toddler” and “preschooler.” Noah’s just a kid. A full-fledged little boy with barrels of energy and unending excitement about everything about him.
He’s jump off of furniture, run through the house, knock down blocks and shoot Nerf darts through the house. He’s broken picture frames from a misfired football/baseball/basketball. He’s the unending plea to “Slow down!” when he’s sprinting down the hallway.
It’s been a bit of a drastic realization for me.
I never realizes how big he was until Jonah was born. I didn’t really realize how much he’d grown up until I watched Jonah learning to crawl, learning to pick up small pieces of food with his fingers, attempting to stand.
Our babies grow up so fast. Much faster than we ever expect them to.
And with growing up, comes “growing up” problems.
Like different kinds of discipline issues. The back talking, the bad attitudes, the pushing limits and trying to press the boundaries.
And the issues with other kids that start to arise. Kids who don’t wan to play with my kid. Kids who are rude or ugly to my son. Kids who say things that aren’t nice. Who leave him out of games and activities. Kids who tell him they don’t like him for no reason whatsoever.
It’s been a tough few weeks for me when it comes to keeping my inner mama bear in check. A little girl in our neighborhood the other day told Noah she didn’t like him and didn’t want to play with him. That she didn’t want him to play with her stuff because she didn’t like him. She laughed at him because he’s still learning to ride his bike and isn’t without his training wheels yet.
It’s hard to have to explain to your child why people are like they are. Why people are ugly and say hurtful things. It broke my heart to have to explain to him that some people just aren’t nice.
I had to reassure him that he was a good boy. A sweet boy. A friendly boy who didn’t do anything wrong just because this particular little girl was mean to him.
It took all of my strength to not walk right up to the door of this little girls house and tell her mom that she was being a brat. That her daughter was being rude to my son when he hadn’t done anything to her.
But I didn’t.
Because as much as it hurt me to see him get his feelings hurt; to have to explain one of the hardest life lessons to him at such a young age, I know that this is one lesson that he will have to learn over and over and over again.
Not everyone is going to like us.
Not everyone is going to be nice to us.
Not everyone is going to be friendly and kind all the time.
That’s life. That’s the society we live in.
Instead of teaching him that we confront and address every unkind word and unkind person, I’m going to teach him that no matter what anyone says, he’s a good boy. A smart boy. A sweet boy. He’s friendly and funny and has the best smile and laugh of anyone I know. He’s good-hearted and honest and he’s exactly who is supposed to be.
He’s absolutely PERFECT the way that he is.
I think Aibileen said it best in The Help:
YOU IS KIND.
YOU IS SMART.
YOU IS IMPORTANT.
And that’s what matters.