Tuesday, October 03, 2006

my baby's no baby no more

It is four years now since I was handed a round fat ball of wrapped-up baby Benjamin. His face was chubby, and his brow was creased as if he was deeply concerned. Fatty and I looked at each other and grinned. "He looks like a front-rower!", Fatty murmured proudly.

Our infant son has grown to be a nuggety little fellow, who today celebrates his birthday with the aid of his new Superman outfit and a set of walkie-talkies. Ben is a fiercely loving, chatty, vigorous kid who never ceases to amaze us with his humour and his inquiring mind.

He greets us in the morning by shouting "Cock-a-doodle-doooooooo!" from his bedroom (not so cute at 6am, but tolerably cute as I recall this now). He farewells me before work with, "Bye Mum. Love you. Drive carefully. Don't crash!". At night, he delays sleep by getting up to ask us intriguing questions:
"Were ankylosauruses plant-eaters?", or "When Holly (his kindy teacher) is old, how will we know which nursing home she's in?". When he falls asleep at last, he looks much younger - clutching an old cot sheet, thumb in mouth.

Before Ben came along, I worried that I could never love a child the way I love his sister, our beloved Laura-girl. And yet, here is proof that the heart has an infinite capacity for love - I love my son deeply, powerfully, utterly.

Happy Birthday, Ben. May you have a life full of the happiness you bring to us each day.


Motherkitty said...

What a sweet tribute to your darling son. Happy, happy birthday, Ben. It's wonderful that he loves you so much, and it's great that as a mother you can appreciate that special love for each child. I seem to recall that I loved my son differently than I loved my daughter -- I loved both fiercely, but differently.

Jelly, you are such a good mother. No wonder your kids love you so much.

cmhl said...

happy birthday Ben!!!

Abandoned in Pasadena said...

Jelly...Happy Birthday to your charmer Ben. Four years old is such a sweet age.

meggie said...

Happy Birthday Ben!

My little grandson will be 4 on 15th, so I know 4!

mackeydoodle said...

Happy 4th Birthday to Ben.
I love 4.....it's the best age.

thisisme said...

Happy birthday Ben!

susan said...

Wishes for a great birthday!

Is it time for the next one?

shellyC said...

Awww...I love your son too after that post and tribute!!

Happy Birthday Ben!!

Cockadoodle doooooooooooo isn't cute at anytime really!!!

Alice said...

Have a great big HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Ben. I hope you have so much fun being four.

I wonder if Ben and Laura know just how much they are loved by you and Fatty? I'm sure they feel all warm and fuzzy with love.

Remiman said...

You refresh me with your words. No one could express one's love more eloquently than you have here.

I'm reminded of Erma Bombeck
when I read your: " Before Ben came along, I worried that I could never love a child the way I love his sister, our beloved Laura-girl. And yet, here is proof that the heart has an infinite capacity for love - I love my son deeply, powerfully, utterly."
So as not to take up room here I'll post an Erma column today and dedicate it to you.

Remiman said...

AHhh, Jelly,
Thanks for the vote of confidence!
Erma was probably my favorite columnist.

I do hug and kiss my kids everytime I see them ( though not nearly often enough these days), and tell them I love them. I also tell each one when they leave; "drive safe, watch out for the other guy." I gave each of them a copy of this column many years ago.

I don't think your reassurances to be silly. I think you're a compassionate and loving lady.

Anonymous said...

soon you will be looking up at an 18 old...just like I do... and thinking wow time has passed.

Franny said...

Happy Birthday Benjamin! (I had no idea he was younger than my son, who will be 5 in two weeks)

You are so much in love with your kids, I can tell that. I really liked his questions before bed. (LOL, the nursing home!!!) Continue to cherish the small things about your kids, and thanks for the smile!

Joey asks the same odd and incessant questions. It really is cute!

HORIZON said...

Lovely post and l can feel your love for both children. Kids say the funniest things at this age- always making us laugh- never a dull moment. My Sam is 4yrs too.
Thank you for this smile before my bed tonight and a happy birthday to your wee son. :)

manababies said...

Happy Birthday, Ben! Funny how even at this age they look so baby-like still when they sleep. But I bet he still has the dimples in his hands (which will be later replaced by knobby knuckles). Four is such a great, fun age!

Mimi said...

Happy Birthday Ben and congratulations all over again Jelly. Wait til your first child outgrows you. It's rather shocking to think you gave birth to such a being such a little while ago.


Kerri said...

Gosh, I missed Ben's birthday! Now that's bad!
Happy happy belated birthday to your dear little Ben. I think he'll grow up to be funny like his mommy, and serious like his dad :)
You are the sweetest, most loving mother Jelly, and to have a dad that plays with his kids....that's a precious gift. Your Ben and Laura are lucky indeed to have you both as parents.