Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Boys will be boys

Ethan continues to say things that cause laughter and amazement. In no particular order:

1. This morning he expressed frustration about having to go "#1" and then almost immediately "#2." He hurried back to the bathroom where he idled away sitting on the toilet frustrated "that is just won't come out." Heather laughed and offered him a magazine indicating that's what guys did. Ethan declined but did say "I'm gonna be here till tomorrow."

2. Ethan has picked up on some negative sayings at pre-school, but that is typical I suppose. When he gets frustrated he lashes out verbally indicating that we are not his parents. The other night when he was frustrated about going to bed, he said, "I'm not tired. I'm not hungry. I'm not going to bed. Ever." When I sternly put him to bed, he said, "You are NOT my dad. Dad." The irony was lost on him.

3. The other day, he was coloring in his Transformer's coloring book, and Heather complimented his improved coloring skills. He sighed, and said, "Yeah, I'm good at everything."

4. Ethan has recently become interested in exercize (mainly, I suspect because he expects to grow up and battle Decepticons from Transformers), and he routinely just drops down and does at least 10 push ups (real ones actually) followed by a couple sets of crunches. He then jumps up, pulls up his sleeve, and says "Wanna feel my guns?" (See the photo above!)

5. After working out, Ethan said recently, "I can't lift our house up, but I can lift up our TV."

6. His ideas on what he will be when he grows up vary with the day, but because he loves race cars, he often says "I'm gonna be a mechanic when I grow up."

7. Last weekend in McCall, he donned his Spiderman life jacket, and I swam with him out to a floating trampoline where he had a blast jumping and splashing. When we were swimming back, his teeth chattered, and he kept saying "Don't let go of me Daddy. You won't let go of me Daddy, will you?" Never buddy. Never.

8. Also last weekend, I was giving a speech outdoors, and in the middle of it, I felt a tug on my pants. Interrupted, I turned to find Ethan behind me at the podium. A bit irritated, I covered the microphone, leaned down, and said, "Ethan! I'm working. What do you need?" He looked up at me and said, "I just wanted to tell you that I love you Daddy." I returned to the speech and told the audience what he said. Doesn't get much better than that.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Reunions and ruminations

I haven't blogged in a long time it seems because I've been so busy...busy with life, with work, and with a 30 year high school class reunion. My class reunion held in Twin Falls, Idaho the weekend of July 10 had a profound impact on me for some reason. It may be because I got reacquainted with classmates I hadn't seen in years coupled with the realization that I had known many of these 47-48 years olds since the time I was my son Ethan's age. I found myself wondering if the friends and memories he is making today will resonate through the decades.

Of course, I was raised in a relatively small community with a handful of kindergartens, five grade schools, two junior highs, and one high school. We didn't get cable television for years. In other words, the class of 1979 grew up in a relatively cloistered environment with few outside influences. That is a double-edged sword I suppose, but the faces at the 30 year reunion were the same faces posted in grade school photos as if in a time warp. Though we've drifted apart over the years, the foundation of our lives was in some respects each other.

My son is growing up in Boise, Idaho in a different time and certainly a different place. Relationships are as transitory as school boundaries. It doesn't seem likely that he will experience starting kindergarten with a group of kids who will go through a university together. There is something special about such long term shared histories though we have all drifted apart. Friends in childhood reconnect at reunions and vow "to get together this time...really" yet we never do. Perhaps having a shared foundation is enough, and we have used that foundation -- both the good and bad of it -- to move to different places of our own.