Last night J13 and I saw The Avengers. We saw it with his dad the weekend it came out. Both of us wanted to see it again -- especially since I had heard something on NPR about making sure to sit through ALL the credits for a surprise at the end. Which was, by the way, hilarious.
It's been awhile since I had some alone time with J13. When D10 was first born and still napping (which only lasted for 18 MONTHS OF HIS LIFE) J and I had Special Time every day. As soon as D was asleep J would say "special time!!" which usually meant we were going to play Thomas the Train.
Over the years, anytime just the two of us were together J would announce that it was "special time".
That phrase, like so many other things, has slipped away as both kids have gotten older.
J13 will become J14 in less then two weeks. I'm alway caught off guard when I see another sign of maturity and growth. About a month ago I was talking to him and stopped mid-sentence when I realized I was looking directly into his eyes instead of down into his eyes. Honestly it freaked me out. I actually said, "Dude, I am looking into your eyes instead of down. This is freaking me out. I can't deal with this."
For him going to the movies with me was not a big deal - just a nice thing to do on a summer evening. I think I will always remember it, as ordinary as it was. There were glimpses of the man he will become. The humor and insight. He's thinking and it's a wonderful thing to see. At the same time I still see my little boy, tucked away in there, not quite ready to let go. It's a wonderful middle ground and I'm cherishing every moment of it.
I'm realizing special time is not just those lucky moments I get to spend alone with each child, but that it is every moment, every day.