Will I always remember this day, the day Gavin figured out how to open doors?
Or this weekend, when he remembered his climbing skills that enable counter access, discovered the hall closet, removed the letter "a" from the laptop keyboard, delighted in untying his bib and discarding the booster tray during every meal, and in general produced such a surge of mischievous behavior that I literally wondered if I would lose my mind?
But will I also remember how Gavin turns his cheek and presses it against mine when I ask him for a kiss? How he leans out of Daddy's arms and says "Mama" in such a contended, happy when when he sees me? How he pats my tummy (and sometimes other parts of me) and says "baby" with such sweet affection? The excited face he makes when in the midst of an adventure? How he giggles maniacally when tickled? The way he cuddles with Russell the bear and derives such happiness from his constant companionship?
I hope so.
I've spent a lot of time lately wondering how the arrival of Baby Girl is going to affect our family -- from the kids' reactions and behavior to daily schedules and my own mobility -- and I've come to the conclusion that we're all going to be okay. But little Gavin, current Prince of Bartle Palace, is soon to be dethroned. Will he know my heart still has room for him, that my arms can still hold him, my life still has time for him?
He's so young. He's so small. He's had such a short stint as The Youngest in the Family. I'm sure that's why I wonder, why I worry and fret about his tender little heart. But pretty soon all of Gavin's littleness will seem so grown-up, so mature, so advanced in comparison to an infant whose dependence on me will be complete.
In no time at all, I'm sure my independent little boy will remind me that life goes on, changes and all. He'll just go on making messes, getting into trouble, and melting my heart. And that's when I'll know he'll be okay.