on the good days, we’ll play under the fig tree in our underwear and blow bubbles on the couch. we’ll sleep on golden tables and drag our feet through the wet dirt and damp grass, lay on a blanket by the white wall and absorb the sunlight.
there wont be any yelling on the good days. just birds and crickets, and the swarming bees. just the way you whisper awww when you give me a hug. just the sound of waves while you sleep next to me.
I was in the kitchen putting dishes away when I heard them both giggling. I looked up and saw that Rex had crawled over to the curtains and B had climbed behind them and was playing peek-a-boo with him. And the harder Rex laughed, the more excited Brigsby got until they were both kind of sprawled out on the floor laughing and rolling around.
just know this: on my deathbed, I will ultimately value my life based on how those two love each other, how they face their role as brothers. and on Monday I would have died happy.
creatrix of hummingbird heart beats and two tiny souls that split all the throbbing energy of the world between them. of softly falling chests and eyelashes pulled from the wings of moths. of arms that pull, arms that cling, arms that plead…arms that hold all the secrets, safe and tight and writhing. of eyes that burn the most fragile threads of fire straight into my center of gravity.
he likes to paint and color and write with chalk (on everything.) he likes to put things on his head. he likes to wear sunglasses and OH MY GOD shoes. he loves shoes. he likes to put things away where they belong – he puts dishes in the sink, shoes in their basket, books on their shelf.
He says a good handful more words now, just not constantly. he does understand literally everything though. he knows exactly what you’re saying and what the words mean, and he tries to say them, just not well. he has a bunch of different laughs and reads to himself and sings sometimes.
his hair is hella blonde and curly and sometimes the top puffs up in a little afro. he has huge feet. like big, giant, wide feet. he always at all times has at least one cut/scrape/bruise. he is adventurous. he likes to fall down, climb on top of things, jump, dive, roll…all of it. he is really sensitive to heat and his face will flush in about 30 seconds of being outside.
he knows where we keep his diapers and will bring them to us with his wipes when he feels wet. he can also remove his diapers and shorts and he likes to be naked. we’re slowly starting potty training – mostly getting him to associate the right words with going so he can tell me before he goes and I can get him to the potty in time. he thinks the potty is funny.
he takes about a 2-3 hour nap most days in the afternoon and despite our efforts, he is resisting a later bed time. we’re trying to push it back a little later to make our night time routine easier with both boys. if we try to put him down too late, it’s like he gets a second wind and can not fall asleep even though his eyes are half shut and he’s yawning and rubbing his face and obviously miserable.
he loves fruit and pasta and home-made juice and milk. he still isn’t crazy about meat, but sometimes he’ll go for it. he has weird eating phases week to week so we give him liquid vitamins in either water or juice everyday so at least I know he’s getting the essentials on days he just picks at his food. he can eat with a fork like a pro but he’s still pretty messy with a spoon. he loves peanut butter. we were going to wait to give it to him, but he just sneaked up one day and took a bite of pbj out of alex’s hand…and he was fine. no reaction except wanting the entire sandwich. he doesn’t take bottles anymore. we had him down to only a bed-time bottle while I rocked him at night and one night I just gave him a sippy cup. and he never even noticed. he doesn’t try to take Rexley’s bottles either…he does try to feed him though. he is still absolutely positively enamored with Rex. he just loves him so much.
and tantrums have started. he throws himself on the ground, on his back, and lifts his feet and head about 6 inches off the floor and screams. and then he writhes around and fumbles trying to get up without using his hands. it’s pretty funny…except for the part where he’s visibly stressed out. it makes my stomach kind of burn, watching him get that upset. we’ve just been letting him ride it out – we keep an eye on him and make sure he isn’t in a position to hurt himself and we wait. we don’t cave in and we don’t coddle him. after a few minutes he’s fine and acts like nothing happened. he likes pushing boundaries. it’s his favorite.
he likes to point at things and have you tell him what they are and he’s just recently gotten really good at throwing balls. he can aim and throw across the room with decent accuracy. he loves to stack his blocks and wear his ‘watch.’ he sits outside with me sometimes and helps me pull weeds. he just started doing it one day and he grabbed a bucket to put them in and everything. he can kind of ride a skateboard and he drives his 4 wheeler and loves to dance and spin and put his food on his head. he can operate the tv and xbox from watching us, which is kind of awesome and infuriating at the same time. He watched me hanging pictures in the hallway a while back and now takes pieces of paper and holds them to the wall and bangs on them and smiles at me. and he copies alex with his tools and caulk gun.
he can point to his head and ears and we’ve almost got toes down. he instigates tickle fights at least once every day. we had to buy a lock for our pantry bi-fold door because he just liked to help himself and assumed all the food was for playing with and feeding to the dogs (who he is also obsessed with).
he started putting both hands to the side of is face and pushing his cheeks in with his eyebrows raised if you say ‘Oh no!’
In the middle of a monday, in the middle of a soft black sheet on the floor of a sun drenched room, two boys lay staring up at a camera. one squirmed and smiled, waved his little fists in the air. the other gave him kisses, rested his cheek to his, held his hand and watched his every move. for a few minutes in the middle of a monday there was no crying, no screaming, no scolding or fussing….no falling, no barking, no chaos, no messes.
we were sitting out in the driveway the other night after dinner, throwing the basketball around, letting B get as filthy as possible before his bath. Rex was sleeping by the rosebush and my hands were covered in chalk, streaks of a dozen different colors leaving kaleidoscope fingerprints on everything I touched. The crickets were out, the sun was low, the air was heavy…and it felt like summer.
And then B came out of the garage with the skateboard Alex made for him around Christmas. I sat at the end of the driveway watching Alex teach him how to sit on it, how to roll down the driveway. I watched his hands as they caught him, as they hovered just close enough to keep him safe. He’d roll him down the driveway, I’d watch him laugh and shriek, eyes bright, until I caught him in my arms…and then he’d roll that little skateboard back up to Alex until eventually he could do it on his own.
Brigzilla the Great now weighs 26 pounds and is 36 inches tall. He’s off the charts. He wears a size 7 shoe. seven.
He can run and walk and gallop all over the place. He walks himself to the car now and likes to wear shoes even if he’s otherwise completely naked – which is his favorite thing. He adores Alex – kisses and hugs and cuddles all day every day and if he isn’t here, B will walk all over the house calling daddy.
He can say mom, daddy, doggies, Stella, G (padre), and will spout out a solid toes or please or whatever every now and then. He’s great at pointing to what he wants or he’ll just bring you his cup if he’s thirsty, his blanket if he’s tired, that kind of thing. He likes to throw balls and do pushups and play with all the baby stuff for Rex. He loves books and is more content now to read them than eat them – but he’s still kind of a goat when it comes to eating paper and cardboard :/
He dances like a girl in a rap video. If he hears music, he’ll haul ass into the room and instantly start dropping his butt to the floor, with one hand down to brace himself and then pulls out his signature spin. It’s awesome.
He goes through these phases with food where one day he will eat all of everything you put in front of him and then a day later will only eat bananas if they’re cut a certain way or something equally ridiculous. I started putting liquid vitamins in his diluted juice so that no matter what I know he’s getting them. He also likes to feed the dogs. He’s really sneaky about asking for snacks (bringing me his snack trap or banging on the pantry door) and then he’ll put one in his mouth, wait until I walk away and then give it to Stella.
He likes to take showers with us on occasion and my basket of bras in the closet amazes him and he drags them all over the house which can be awkward when people come over and realize they’re sitting on my pink bra with the pretty straps.
He’s got like a hundred teeth. And when he goes through teething, he gets at least 6 at a time so those weeks are always really shitty. He has a little toothbrush and brushes them by himself every night in the bathtub.
He likes to rearrange the salad dressing in the refrigerator and dive over the sides of the couch. He’s got two spots in the house where he likes to sit and chill and hide things. He likes shutting doors. All doors. He’s got his own cabinet in the kitchen with plastic stuff in it and helps ‘cook’ when we’re in the kitchen.
He listens pretty well as long as you don’t sound mad when you tell him no – he’ll test boundaries and limits and smile at you so it gets really frustrating, but after a few times he’ll stop and after a few days he’ll basically never do whatever it was he was doing again. However. If you yell no at him and sound mad or startle him, he has an insane breakdown because he thinks he’s in trouble and he gets all clingy and pitiful and then you feel guilty and want to cry too.
He likes to drink out of normal cups even though it’s majorly messy. He can kind of eat with a fork – a few bites will make it into his mouth. We’re working on weaning the bottle and the pacifier…so yeah.
He still goes to bed around 6:30/7:00 and sleeps 12 straight hours with one nap in the middle of the day for 2-3 hours. When we moved, he went through a month long period where he was up several times at night…but now we’re back to normal, thank god.
If he needs a diaper change, he’ll bring me a cloth diaper…one time I was peeing and he went into his room, grabbed one and brought it to me and then he clapped. He likes to clap. And he’ll take off disposables if they feel wet and I caught him peeing into one of his bath toys a couple weeks ago so we got a little potty for him to get comfortable with and hopefully have him trained by the time he’s 2.
He’s a major flirt and people always comment on his eyes/general happy disposition/and his smile. But he can still be a cranky jerk sometimes and he whines and throws ungodly tantrums and hits ( fastest way to piss me off) and bites (he thinks it’s cute) and makes huge messes and can be a massive handful. But overall he’s good and even tempered and really funny. He’s kind of a smart ass. And a charmer. He’s cute. And really affectionate. And independent.
We just switched him to gdiapers (using cloth inserts) and they’re amazing. I love them. B, however, still flips when you lay him down to change his diaper 90% of the time, so all diapers – disposable, water, cloth – can be a pain to get on him. But beyond that, they’re great. They don’t leak and the kid pees like a 300 pound Clydesdale.
a year ago, to the minute exactly, I was in that foggy place, the place where you exist purely as instinct amongst shadows…I was there and I was fighting with every last shred of the fabric that bound us both together, fighting against everything that in the foggy place seemed right, knowing it was time for us to be separated, to be finally ripped from each other, and breaking my body in two to make it so.
and in that heavy second where I was truly alone inside myself once more, with the whirlwind in my head blocking out all sound and light, I was scared I wouldn’t be able to find you in the dissipating fog. But you were there, still tethered to me, tiny roots that grew through me and grounded me to the earth, our souls still intrinsically anchored to each other, minds and hearts connected, where our bodies suddenly were not.
a year later and nothing has changed. you are everything.
So B had his first birthday party on Saturday. And he cried. And he fussed. And for a lot of it, he was not happy. And I was worried. And I was anxious. And by 7 that night, he had a 102 fever and a nasty stomach virus.
But when he was happy, I swear to god rainbow beams were shooting out of his face. He gave his best friend Jonah kisses and ate his giant cupcake. There were cake pops and polka dots, teal velvet, and endless bubbles. Corn dogs and popcorn and candy and chicken wings. Pizza rolls and giant pretzels, hot chocolate and frozen drinks. Golden felt crowns and a bunny-masked pinata. A velociraptor with a top hat and a cupcake. A photo booth that went forgotten, volleyball and corn hole. Music and mayhem, painted balloons and metallic gold.
I don’t like kid’s parties. I don’t like the themes, or the awkward sitting, or awkward small talk, or staring at the kid while they cry and open presents and the like. I don’t like kid’s parties. So we didn’t have one.
This is going to be a post about poop. Last night you stood up in the bathtub…and just started pooping. And in a semi-neurotic panic attack, I started jumping up and down, almost fell, pulled you out of the tub, squealed, gagged, then you fell and cried, so I wrapped you in a towel while trying to drain the tub and throw all your toys in the sink before they got all poopy, AND OH MY GOD EWWWWW, and then you pooped in the towel.
This is only relevant because your uncle did the same thing when we were little. He was like…maybe two. And I was three, maybe four, so we were still taking bubble baths together before bedtime. Serious bubble baths, the kind where you can’t see any water. Just bubbles. And on one particular dark and stormy night I went to pick up the soap. But it was not soap. He had pooped. I picked up the poop, saw that it was poop, and promptly started screaming, and then we both cried.