Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Little Boy Inside

When JT was a first grader he would refer to himself as a little boy.  I was always charmed by those references.  These days there is a deep-voiced, tall, and strong young man in my home and the little boy often seems long gone.

Though this transition is perfectly natural and appropriate, I still miss having a little boy who grabs my hand and seats himself on my lap.  I’ve learned that the compensation for a grown up boy comes in the form of his wicked clever sense of humor, his ability to perform assorted tasks of strength and height, and the pleasure I take in his growing intellectual maturity.

I’ve also learned to embrace the moments when the little boy still inside JT  makes an appearance.  This week, that happened when it came time to spend his birthday gift card on a new Major League Baseball t-shirt.  The fact that he now likes gift cards for presents is evidence of a grown up in the making.  But the preference for a gift card to buy a baseball t-shirt?  Well, that’s all little boy.

JT sorted out his options and settled on two favorite shirts.  His heart leaned toward a Cardinals Michael Wacha t-shirt.  His head was worried that Wacha may not work out this season.  So he did what all careful shoppers do: he consulted with Grandpa in a long-ranging conversation about batting order, Cardinals pitching prospects, and pre-season baseball.  His anxieties abated, he pressed send on the Wacha t-shirt.

I watched it all bemused at this view of the intersection of childhood and grown-up, grateful that the little boy he once was is still alive and well in 5 foot 9 inch young man who lives under my roof.

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