Saturday, March 9, 2013

double digits and driving

he gave me a hug, a kiss on the cheek, and a good night, mom all in about 3 seconds flat.  "i'll be up in minute to tuck you in, connor,"  i said with hands buried in the hot water of dinner dishes.  "no, it's okay, mom.  you don't have to come up.  i can put myself down."

tomorrow my boy turns 10.

it is his last night being 9 and i will tuck him into his bed whether he needs me to, or not.

i know he's no longer the baby.  he gave up that long standing status when bella came home a couple years ago,  but tell that to my mama's heart.  he's always been my little guy, but now he's growing inches each week and tomorrow will hit double digits.  that feels big for him.  that, perhaps, feels bigger for me as i watch this little guy grow right before my eyes.

and even though he was the youngest for so long, he isn't a typical youngest.  there's nothing about him that seems babied or coddled or helpless.  from the time he was tiny, he liked to pretend he was big; in charge, strong and independent; in the driver's seat -- literally, in the driver's seat. before he was barely walking, he loved nothing more than to climb into my car and sit behind the steering wheel.  he still does that. i think it is the place where he dreams best: behind the wheel.

he is a boy who drives things. and as he hits double digits this week, i have to wonder what does that mean for this little guy's future?  where will he go?  what will he do? driving typically takes you places -- that is, unless you're a little dude pretending.  on second thought, maybe it is exactly in our pretending that we travel the furthest.  there is this long road before him. waiting. wild and wonderful. terrible and terrific.  but as his mom, i am in no hurry for him to travel out on it.  i am in no hurry for this child to grow up any faster than he already is.  i wonder to myself, what will i do when he is no longer riding his bike in the driveway, through the yard, around the house, down the street?  someday he'll trade in that worn out bicycle for a car and that car will have wheels and an engine and will go places unseen from my kitchen window.  places which cannot hear my dinnertime call from the back door.  places which are beyond me.  places beyond.

my boy who drives things turns 10 tomorrow.

one of our family traditions is to take a special 10th birthday trip.  the older three had their adventures and this weekend connor will get his.  he and rick are heading up to northern minnesota for some father-son time.  when rick and connor began talking about what they would do for this trip, the only thing connor cared about was that it included (you guessed it) "driving something."  so off they will go this saturday to drive snow mobiles up north...i think there's talk of some dog-sledding as well.  not that we couldn't do that in our own backyard, mind you, but there's something special in going away. just a boy and his dad.  a few days ago he said to me, "i can't believe it's finally my turn, mom."  my answer:  "i can't believe it either."

yep, my boy turns 10 tomorrow.

 connor rides his bike everyday -- even in the snow.  

 he doesn't mind driving people places either!

 guess what he was going to do with this?  yep, drive it. 
the boy has owned more remote control things than i can count.
this particular purchase was the bribe needed to get him to stop sucking his thumb. 
it worked!

 connor can even pick his nose while driving -- the kid's got talent!

sometimes, a little help is a good thing, too. 


Simply LKJ said...

So sweet. Such happy memories. Why do they have to grow up so fast??? Katie is home for Spring Break...less than 2 months left in her freshman year of college!!! How did that happen???

Jennifer said...

Oh, that is such a great post! I know - double digit birthdays make your heart heart! Adrienne just turned 10 . . . I'm planning a similar post, only her obsession has always been dancing!

Jennifer said...

Oooops , meant to say "make your heart hurt!"

Aus said...

Happy Birthday Connor - hope you get a couple bazillion miles more! ;)

hugs - aus and co.

elisa said...

My youngest boy is 9. I can't believe in a few short months he will be 10. He too used to be my youngest until we adopted but he is still the youngest boy and I treasure every moment with him, because I know I will blink and he will be getting his temps just like his oldest brother just did. Sigh. Way. too. fast....

Jamie Molle said...

This just happened for Christian, my youngest, as well. I felt the same mama-pain. Happy that he's a healthy double-digit boy, but wanting time to slow down.....