Cautious and Carefree
We'll start with Gage. He has always been extra careful, no doubt thanks to a hovering mother. Fifteen months old and the kid was in and out of his crib at leisure. That reckless behavior, among others, caused me to be over protective. My helicopter tendencies have given him a semi-paralyzing fear of the unknown. Last week I told the boys to go explore. It was nice outside and their obsession with all things hunting needed to be fed. "Put on your boots and go explore the long grass and trees on the hillside. I'll stay here and watch." Gage immediately started in with the questions:
What should I wear?
How far can I go?
Do I need my backpack?
Are there snacks in my bag?
When should I come back?
What if I can't hear you?
And on and on and on.
I'm trying to help him earn some independence, and take back my sanity. I'm also working to earn back my patience badge that was taken back after a period of incessant barking so I took the time to answer his questions. He seemed satisfied and turned (loaded with backpacks, snacks and boots) for an adventure.
Max was almost out of sight by the time he decided to leave.
Since I've spent every waking moment of Max's 2 1/2 years of existence answering an infinite amount of his brother's questions, he sort of just does whatever we tell him to do. I said, "explore" and he took off through chest-deep weeds and ankle-deep mud, fearless and alert.
Gage: Cautious, Details Aren't Optional
Max: Carefree, Under the Radar
Likeness: Both giggle when I say "booty" or "fart".
Scarecrow and Tinman
I'm 90% obsessed with all things Wizard of Oz. It dates back to our high school musical production which ingrained some of the best memories from my teenage years into long term storage. I've started introducing the boys to bits and pieces. I'm certain they aren't prepared to see the green faced wicked witch start on fire in the classic version, but they've seen some kid friendly flicks and seem amused.
Max is my Tinman. I realize in the film Tinman needed a heart but at the end, they realized he had one the whole time, blah blah...(it seemed so obvious to me through the whole thing, but whatever). Max often tells me things like, "You look like a pwincess mommy!" and "I love you most!" Friends have called his hugs healing and the boy just lives to love. He truly is a ray of sunshine.
Gage has his own way of loving. He has never been interested in snuggling or cuddling, prefers to run, laugh, giggle, tickle and fight to show affection. This morning he told me, "I have three best friends in this house. My brother, Wrangler (the dog), and Daddy!" It brought me to tears. I know he didn't mean to make me feel like the fifth wheel, but seriously. He clearly doesn't know how blatant this boy/girl ratio is staring me in the face right now. And he does love me. At that instant, he just loved EVERYBODY ELSE more.
In keeping with theme, he is clearly our Scarecrow right now. The boy loves to learn, loves to be fed new information, and loves to discover things on his own. He's really into math right now so our common conversation in the car goes something like this:
Gage: Hey Mom what's 4+4?
Me: What Gage?
Gage: 8! Know what happens when you take away 6?
Gage: You have 2!
This conversation continues until we reach our destination. Sometimes I quiz him, but usually the numbers just run through his head and he shares with anyone willing to listen. Not bad for a 4 year old!
Throw in my courageous hubby, my homebody self and our yippity dog and we're the full cast of characters.