When my first son was around 2 years old, I wrote an article about all the things I did not want to forget. With my youngest now almost 3, there are so many things I want to remember about him, from the way the boys interact with each other to the things they say. I feel it only fair to do an article focused on Joel this time.
With a great imagination, Joel likes to tell stories. After we put him in bed, we hear dinosaurs yelling and making other odd noises. If you ask nicely, Joel will start off with "Once upon a time, there was a dragon. And he was not happy." He's currently obsessed with stories and if you tell him one, he will ask you for as many as your imagination -- and time -- allows. He also has facial expressions to go with the stories. His evil minion face is pretty amazing.
Joel is chatty, which if you know me or my wife, is no surprise. There are still a few words he gets wrong, and it will be a sad day when he says remote instead of "merlote." With super heroes being a huge theme in my house, I will also be sad when saying "I'm Captain America!" replaces belting out "I'M CAPTAIN CAMERICA! Where's my shield?"
Joel has many expressions. One of my favorites is, "I'm OK," which is repeated almost every time he falls, jumps off something he shouldn't or tries to head-butt you. If you did not know better, you might assume my house is a training ground for WWE, especially with Joel requesting:
- "Henry, will you fight me?"
- "Daddy, let's get Henry!" or;
- "Will you beat him up for me?"
When you throw in my sister's three boys, it's madness as they dress up and put on their version of Wrestle Mania.
On the opposite side of the coin, there are a few things I'm waiting for him to stop asking, such as "can we lick kiss?" The other day in the bathroom I had to break up a lip kiss between two brothers. All I was thinking was where's my camera? It would be perfect for the bar mitzvah montage.
When we go for swim lessons, Joel repeats throughout the entire session, "Don't dunk me, Daddy." The teachers have to walk away because they can't stop laughing. Although I wish he was a fish like his brother, there is a silver lining. The best part of swimming is the hug. He holds me so tight, and begs, "Hold me tighter, tighter." And although I have the "bad kid" in class, I will never get squeezed that tight for 30 minutes straight again. That's the positive aspect of having a child who won't put his face in and push off from the side.
If I was forced to remember only one thing, it would be how he wakes me up when I'm "napping." It wasn't me, but someone must have told him how princesses wake up in fairytales because he wakes me up with a kiss on the cheek. Sometimes he demands, "Nap daddy, and I'll wake you."