Friday, July 11, 2008

Baby graduation?

Today Owen turned one, and I’m feeling sentimental about that. What mother doesn’t get misty-eyed when the little being she brought into the world at something under 10 pounds (not much under in Owen’s case) passes that one-year mark?

We’ve shut down the baby making shop in our family, so Owen’s my last baby – the true baby of our family -- but it’s occurred to me that it’s around now that I’ll probably need to stop referring to him as “the baby,” which I really only do in passing to people I barely know anyway. But I’ve kind of been thinking of Owen as my baby for a long while now. And sure, he’ll always be my baby, but I’m not one of those moms who continues calling her kids “baby” once they start walking and talking. Maybe it’s because if I’d tried that with Will he would have gone ballistic. He’s short for his age, and he hates being called a baby. Maybe it’s because I recognize how much Owen has already grown from "baby" into his own increasingly independent self. On a mental and physical level he’s outgrowing the name. But there’s one little aspect where I haven’t decided if he’s passed my baby graduation test: the kid still has so little hair. He just looks the part.

So maybe since he’s kind of bald and still not quite walking on his own – not officially a “toddler” – I”ll hold on to the baby moniker for just a bit. We need to take these things gradually, I think. It’s bitter-sweet stuff watching our little ones grow up.
(We had a low-key family birthday party today -- a little banana cake, a few presents, a couple rounds of the happy birthday tune. Tomorrow we'll have just a few friends over for an only slightly more jazzed up celebration.)

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