"To him he was always beautiful, and that was all that the little Rabbit cared about."

October 20, 2010

Tony Romo
Originally uploaded by le cabri
Every Tuesday night, Josh has practice and so is gone from about ten minutes after I get home until after 11 pm. I've really come to savor this evening when its just E and I, because it has a totally different dynamic than our other evenings at home. I come home, start a simple dinner (sometimes E helps, sometimes he's not interested), we eat together, just he and I, then he helps me with the dishes, we play some, then sometimes a bath (there was one last night) and bedtime - PJs, teeth, stories, snuggles - a pretty typical night really, but for some reason it seems simpler, closer, and more streamlined with just us two. I wish I could put my finger on why that is.

Recently, E has been all about Football. His aunt introduced him to the game on TV and my mom gave him a Football, and now all he wants to do is watch, play, eat, breathe, and sleep football. (And Pooh. And Trains. So, I guess, its not really all that as obesssions go, but its now on the list of things I hear about every single day.) In cleaning our house this weekend I unearthed a "7-in-1 Family Games Set" that we'd gotten as a gift at some point. Two wooden boards, and the games are checkers, chess, backgammon, Chinese checkers, mancala ... and, umm, two others that I can't remember. E broke into the box and has been playing with it ever since. His dad taught him to play checkers - an interesting experience, as E did well but then burst in to (very real) inconsolable tears when he didn't win, and E asked me to teach him Chess, which I did, but which he quickly lost interest in.

Now, the chess pieces are football players, and E and I spent nearly an hour after supper last night playing 'football' on the chess board and talking about this and that. Because we're apart so much of the day, its a constant source of surprise to me to see the length and breadth of his knowledge on some topics, and to note the (sometimes age appropriate, sometimes not) limits of his knowledge or imagination in others.

One item that came up last night was, for lack of a better phrase, "the souls of toys". E is remarkably cavalier with his toys, which horrifies me, in large part I think because as an only child growing up in a very rural area (I was the only child I'd ever seen "live" until I was four) my toys easily "became real" for me, so much so that I continue to see their real-ness as a 40-something year old adult parent. For E, toys are toys - inanimate objects that exist as entertainment, not much more.

I suppose I shouldn't be surprised by this, but I still wonder if some irreplaceable part of his childhood is missing because his toys aren't real to him.