Wednesday, March 12, 2008

the pepper tree dance

about 15 minutes ago i was sitting on the couch with my boy, watching a little bit of a "baby praise" dvd, winding down before his nap. i was playing with his toes, which i was rewarded for with giggles, then i rested my chin on the top of his head and just breathed in his scent. i was instantly transported back to when he was just new, and his head was so tiny and dark and i used to smell the top of his head, believing that there had never been a sweeter scent. he no longer smells like baby, but the scent of little boy that he carries is just as sweet. over and over i look at him and think, "how is it that he is already a little boy?"

14 months have passed since i gave birth to him and at times, those 14 months seem like only a fleeting moment. of course, while living in those 14 months (especially the first 6 months) time felt like it sometimes stood still while i was waiting for him to "grow out" of his difficult stages.

when i look at him now, i could just cry with how much i love him. when he's asleep, there are times that i miss him! the world is opening up to him and he's beginning to make discoveries all on his own.

the other day we went for a walk to the grocery store. we took the long way, past the cows in the field (mommy said "mooooo" endlessly while tristan just stared at them with a bit of a frown on his face) and then past the little pond to feed the ducks swimming there. it was a warm, breezy day and i lifted tristan out of his stroller to let him walk for awhile on the sidewalk. thrilled at having a bit of freedom, he shouted with delight and began zig-zagging down the sidewalk, pausing freqently to look at a flower here, pick up a stone there. i was getting quite a bit ahead of him, so i called out "tristan!" and he came trotting towards me, eyes glowing, and fists full of rocks.

then something else caught his eye. it was the long, lacy leaves of a pepper tree hanging near the sidewalk with bright pink seeds tempting him to touch them. i stood there and watched and, just then, the breeze picked up and suddenly the branch of the tree began lifting up and down and the leaves all shook and quivered. tristan let go of the rocks he was holding and, very gently took hold of one of the leaves as if to say "may i have this dance?" and then he began bouncing his little bottom up and down, dancing with the tree! he looked at me and grinned so big and i just stood there, partly laughing, partly trying to swallow the lump in my throat because it was a moment so precious and i knew that it would be gone in an instant and i didn't want to forget any detail of it.
and so i am writing it down here, in an attempt to freeze time and, once my little boy is grown and no longer all mine, i'll be able to remember that there was a day when he was so full of childish innocence, that he saw a tree dancing and decided to join in.


Lori said...

This is so precious. And one day you will dance with him at his wedding and maybe, it cross your mind that long, long ago he danced with a pepper tree.

How is it that we already have little men?

Kathy said...

What a delightful experience and you have recorded it beautifully Heidi. I can completely see Tristan and the pepper tree dancing in my mind's eye.

Thanks for the smile.

ateam99 said...

That is such a beautiful story. I am so glad that you decided to share it. I have been fighting all day to not get discouraged, and that was such a bright ray of sunshine that pierced through my dreary day. :) If only we could all feel so free to dance in God's delight.

Alvin & Denise Engler said...

what a beautiful memory -- and what an excellent mom to take the time to catch it and enjoy it! you got a wistful sigh out of me, and now i've gotta get off this computer and go play! :)

running wildly said...

This is beautiful. Etch it in you memory forever.

Shaun & Kristal Sawyer said...

Oh the love a mother has for her brought tears to my eyes!

Sarafina said...

that was so beautiful Heidi.

Alvin & Denise Engler said...

plus.... you have PEPPER TREES?! so jealous.


Charlene said...

I know what you mean about time going so fast(except for the first six months). I can't believe Joshua is already 15 months. And I absolutly love watching him make discoveries and grow and learn. It really is the most amazing time. I love, love, love this time.
Thanks for this lovely posting Heidi!!
you are such a fantastic writer by the way.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful way you have with words, and what a touching story. You wrote it in a way that I could relate, even though my girls are way into their 20's already.

Owen & Bonnie said...

Hi Heidi,

I found your blog through Kristal's (my cousin). I remember you from Central Heights. I've often popped in to your blog and have enjoyed reading about your life in California.

This post is so beautiful that it made me cry! Thank you for sharing it. You have an amazing gift to write - your words are heart-felt and your honesty is refreshing. I think this post could be published! Thanks for letting me have a peek into your journey...!

Bonnie Boehr