I feel like I've spent much of the summer in dual roles. The first one is fueled by my Mommy guilt - and tries to entertain Brian (and also *accidentally* spoil him at times) out of my own fears that he is extraordinarily lonely. I realize that this might be my own projection of what I *think* he might be feeling - and may not be his actual reality - but guilt makes you act and do things that aren't always rational. The second role, ironically, is me trying to get him used to the fact that it's now "just us." At least until Hope comes. There's no Gavin... there's no aide five days a week... and there's no therapists in and out of the house. This summer, mainly, it has been me - a grieving, tired and pregnant 43 year old woman - and him - an active, energetic, active... did I mention energetic?... and very talkative 4 year old. I hate that he has to get used to this... but it's important. Soon Hope will be here - and although she will be a "sibling," she won't really be a playmate for quite some time. In reality, she'll be taking time away from him as I tend to her.
For now I continue to think of things to do - the two of us and, when Ed's not at work, the three of us. The other day, we painted this butterfly on canvas together. Although Ed and I think of Gavin when we see anything with butterflies, Brian was painting this specifically for Hope, he told us.
We really didn't help much. Brian owned this special project...
...and he did a great job!!
Yesterday, Miss Sara - who was a constant presence in Brian's life for over a year - came over to spend the evening with us. She and her parents had gifts for Brian and Hope! Brian was very excited about BOTH presents... AND seeing Miss Sara!
They picked out a matching game for him. Brian has a ridiculously good memory, so he should be great at this game!
And then he opened Hope's present which was as big as him!
He FLIPPED OUT when he saw what it was. Sara and her parents didn't know this, but Brian had CHOSEN this play gym for his sister!
While I thought I would get the "Rainforest" gym that I had for both boys - Brian had a different idea and told me.
"Mama, look!" he exclaimed in Babies r Us one day. "Hope needs this toy! It has 'ocean people' and a big 'dolphin.' Gavin loved the ocean so we need to get this for Hope."
Done, I thought.
It's amazing that they chose this without knowing. Brian is so happy!
Speaking of Hope - Sara snapped this photo of me, my new short hairdo and my six month pregnant belly. (No, smart alec, I am NOT having triplets despite my gigantor boo... oh, never mind.)
After opening the generous and unexpected gifts, we all piled in the car for a rare and shocking event. We went to a Phillies Game!! (The Phillies are the professional baseball team in Philadelphia for my overseas readers - or people like me who might have thought they were a football team.) Ed won four tickets in his company's box suite... how could we say no?
Brian was SO excited. He actually asked me to take a photo of him standing in front of this statue - having no idea what it said.
The box suite - holy cow. Now THAT is the way to watch (or not watch) a baseball game!! Air condition... food... your own bathroom... comfy chairs... it was awesome.
We aren't the biggest sports fans, but there was something about seeing Ed at a baseball game with his son that got me a little choked up.
And we all agreed that Gavin would have loved the experience. The lights... the colors... the cool night breeze when we sat in the outside seats.
Brian was so excited that Miss Sara came with us. And even MORE excited that he was up past his 7pm bedtime! And I think he was the MOST excited that I got him a red water ice. The fact that some of the skin around his mouth is STILL pink today scares me a little - what is it doing to his insides?? But hey - we were at a baseball game. All bets are off when it comes to food. (At least that's what we all told ourselves as we noshed on Cheesesteaks and Roast Pork with Broccoli Rabe sandwiches - my favorite.)
Thanks to a reader, we knew to ask for a "My First Game" certificate at Guest Services!
He had such a great time. And the timing of getting these tickets was perfect! Tonight, Brian has his very first T-Ball practice. This baseball game got him so excited to play! He must have said five times on the way out and all the way home, "I had SO much fun. I can't wait to do this again!!" I joke all the time about how much I hate sports - and would prefer that my boys like Broadway shows so I don't have to sit on the sidelines of game after game. But I don't *really* mean it. If Brian (or Hope) wants to play sports - and THIS is the face I see from the sidelines?
I'll be the the most supportive sports Mom there is.