A brief look at yesterday’s Remy-Anselm Hour.
Here it is: his last monthly update as a one-year-old.
What can I say about my sweet, lovable Clive? He is my gift from God.
Almost seven years ago, I lost a baby who should have been born in July. On the fourth anniversary of my D&C–on the exact day–I discovered that we would be welcoming another baby into our home. He was supposed to be born in August, but he came in July instead. What a blessing.
Right away I knew this kid was something else. While Ephraim’s sleepy newborn phase lasted a good seven weeks, Clive’s lasted about one. He had two settings: Happy and Unhappy. And when he was Happy, he was very, very happy. And when he wasn’t, he wasn’t.
You never had to guess where Clive stood on things.
Only a few months into my career as Clive’s Mama, my own mama sent me a copy of Dobson’s The Strong-Willed Child. Good thing, too.
From the beginning he has been direct and exact. Waiting to do things until he was sure he’d do it well. Attentive and pensive. He is our thinker; he has learned much from his careful observation of his parents and his big brother.
At his twelve-month appointment, his pediatrician commented on how engaged and interactive he was for his age. He would say something unintelligible to me, then stare me down until I responded. I’ll never forget the first time I corrected him for touching something he wasn’t supposed to. At that age, Ephraim would have backed off immediately, though he would have complained about it. Clive just looked at me like I’d grown horns. It took several minutes of power struggle for him to accept that I was serious. I called him my little bulldog. And I prayed that he would always have that kind of tenacity for Truth.
His determination is evident also in his affection for his family. While Clive may not be more tender-hearted than his big brother, he is quicker to show it, really loving to cuddle and content to just sit with us, sucking his two fingers in his characteristic way. When he feels the need to be close to someone, he will not back off until he gets what he’s. And I love it. Except when I’m trying to cook.
He’s become the little mockingbird of the house, echoing in particular anything his Big Brother has to say, which can be a good thing and a bad thing. Verbally he is way ahead of where his brother was at 23 months, and he is gaining ground on his gross motor skills. He has just learned to hop with both feet at once, which is not too shabby for a kid who couldn’t walk just a couple of months ago.
It’s been a great twenty-three months, almost two years, with this little guy. Next month he turns two, and these monthly updates will change to quarterly ones. I can hardly believe it–but there it is.
On the 30 of May, Clive Louis turned twenty-two months.
On that day I was also doing laundry, cleaning, and packing like crazy in anticipation of our trip to see Grandfather and GranMaggie.
I think it was raining, too.
At any rate, there wasn’t much time to take pictures and go someplace with wi-fi so I could share about Clive’s month. I decided to wait until we were in Kentucky, as (I figured) pictures there would be more interesting anyway.
I was right.
We woke up this morning to slightly cooler temperatures after yesterday’s rain, and Jeremy took the boys outside, barefoot, to run around in the grass. Clive, however, decided it would be a better idea to climb into Maggie’s washtub and sit in the very cold water. You know, just for fun.
The kid likes water. He is always asking me if he can get in the tub (“Baff? Baff?”) And shrieks with joy when he hears the faucet turn on. It is also a constant struggle to keep his chubby little toddler hands out of the Cat’s bowl, though I’m sure she wouldn’t mind chubby toddler fingers in it if she knew they were his.
He loves to pour water from one container to another, watching it cascade through the air.
Oddly enough, “water” isn’t one of his regularly used words. It’s likely that he’s still practicing it, mentally, in the car or as he is falling asleep at naptime. He generally will not say a word until he feels he can say it correctly. His “correct” vocabulary is far beyond what Ephraim’s was at this age–which is saying something, since Ephraim was one serious chatterbox. Clive is still the quieter of the two, but he is easier to understand–that is until he gets excited and spouts off some great long sentence in Clivese. Those are generally unintelligible. And often about water. Or cars.
He’s 100% walking, now, which he does with a somewhat stiff gait and his hands held out–his fists clenched, if he’s excited–he makes me laugh to see him.
He is enamored with everything his Big Brother does. If Ephraim is finished with playing cars, Clive is finished, too. (“No car!”) If Ephraim is done eating, Clive is done eating, too. (“All done all done all done? Pease pease pease!”) If Ephraim falls down and hurts himself, Clive finds the nearest surface and whacks his head against it and cries, too. I’m not joking.
I’m not sure how he really feels about Anselm, though he is excited to see him from time to time. I believe he is secretly thrilled for another chance to poke him in the eyes or stick his finger in his ears. When he catches me watching him closely, though, he gently strokes Anselm’s chest. “Nice, nice.” he grins. Whatever. I’ve got my eye on you, mister.