I LOVE many things. Chocolate. The beach. The feel of the summer sun on my shoulders. Four-inch high-heeled shoes. But of all the things I love now, and have loved in the past (any idea whatever happened to Shawn Cassidy?), nothing compares to the love I have for The Three Monkeys. As challenging and strong-willed as the three of them are, my love for them is unwavering. They have served as great inspirations for my writing. I have written about each of them, at different points in their development, usually because I was particularly struck by something they had done. This piece is one I wrote about Monkey #2 – The Middle Monkey.
Monkey #2, at 10 – almost 11), is the consummate middle child. He craves alone time. Who can blame him? Particularly being sandwiched in between The Asperger King and Princess Bossyboots. They DEMAND so much attention, my little middle monkey will do what ever it takes to get someone to pay ANY attention at all to him. And frequently, it is negative attention. One day as I was about to lose my mind and all I could think about was just how IRRITATING he was being, I decided to “reframe” his seemingly aggravating habits, and make them endearing. Hence this piece.
There is so much “stuffs” about you to love.
The way you talk endlessly about Pokemon. And The Lord of the Rings. And Transformers. And Star Wars. And…And…And…
The way you will fill the pockets of your coat with granite gravel just because it sparkled and you wanted to add it to your “rock collection,” which is in a pile by the door on the carport.
The way your thumb still goes up to your mouth when you are nervous – but you hold back slipping it in – and you check to make sure I am noticing.
The way you will read aloud from those silly joke books and then say, “I don’t get it.” Followed by, “OOOOOOOHHHHHHH!” after I explain it – for the hundredth time.
The way you love maps. And mazes. And LEGOS. And puzzles. Even if they are strewn about your bedroom floor.
The way you are so curious about everything around you. Yes, everything.
The way you put your shirt on backwards, or your shoes on the wrong foot, or wear two different ones, or have chocolate all over your face – and not really care.
But mostly the way you will, out of nowhere, look over at me and say in your sweet lispy way,
“I love you, Mommy.”
*sigh* I love you, too, baby. Truly, I do.