Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Going places with William

A few weeks ago, we took Will to the Gardenland Express exhibit at the Missouri Botanical Garden.  He was more interested in running around than in actually looking at the trains or flowers, but every once and a while he did slow down enough to take a little bit of notice.  Unfortunately, he didn't slow down enough for us to get a good picture of the three of us while we were there.  That's too bad because it would have made an awesome Christmas card.





Holding Mom's hand


Will with Daddy


We also walked around outside a bit and then went in the Climatron, which was the most freaking awesome thing ever.  It was an honest to God indoor rainforest.  I could have spent days and days in there.  It was hard to take pictures inside because the instant you took out your camera, the lens would fog over.  It was beautiful and amazing.  It made me wonder what I am doing with my life and why I am not back in the jungle studying monkeys like I ought to be.




When we finally left, Will was tired and practically beside himself.  He would alternately throw himself on the ground for no reason, or just plant it and refuse to move.  I said to him, "Will do you want to walk or do you want me to hold you?"  He looked at me quite plaintively and said, "HOLD YOU."

Sometimes he doesn't get his pronouns quite right.

I picked him up and carried him the rest of the way, which was actually a long way, out of the gardens and back to the car.  My arms got very tired.  As we were walking throught he parking lot, he pressed his cheek against mine and he gave a little giggle.  I could feel him smile.  I said, "Do you want to press your cheek against Mommy's cheek?" He smiled again and said, "CHEEK."  He was very sweet and my arms didn't feel so tired anymore, and I was glad to be carrying him.

Last weekend, Rob was away somewhere with the car, and on Saturday morning I decided that Will and I would take the train to the Missouri History Museum to go to a Mammoth and Mastadon Story Hour they were having.  Will can be very slow in the mornings, or really, any time that you are trying to get him to do something on time.  I finally got him moving by repeatedly telling him that we were going to take the train and stressing how fun that would be.  Every other time I've taken him on the train, I've put him in the stroller to walk over to the station, but this time I decided to leave the stroller at home. The stroller tends to become a big nuisance when we get to wherever we're going because I've got to try to hang onto it in addition to hanging onto William (he generally refuses to stay in the stroller for long periods of time), and that can be quite a challenge.

The 1/4 mile walk to the train station was slow but methodical-- I was proud of William for moving along at quite a respectable pace for a 2-year old and not planting it or throwing any fits.

We had a very long wait once we got to the train station because on weekends the train only comes every 1/2 hour, and apparently we got there right after the last train had left.  But we got through it.  I told William to look for the train, and for the most part, he did-- he stood there and stared down the tunnel, every once and a while saying, "TRAIN COMING?"

At last the train arrived and he was very excited.  We got onto the train and he marched right over to an empty seat and climbed up in it to sit.  He was beaming.  This was the first time he'd ever been on the train when he wasn't in his stroller.  He really enjoyed sitting in that seat.

Unfortunately, the museum was only 2 stops away, so it was a very short ride.  He did not want to get off that train. A look of horror washed his face when I told him we were getting off the train, and he planted it.  He clung to the seat.  He cried.  He screamed.  He kicked.  Red splotches of anger appeared on his face.  I ended up having to hoist him up and haul him off of the train.  He cried and kicked and screamed all the way to the museum, about another 1/4 mile away.  I became very exasperated.

Once inside the museum, he was briefly assuaged when he saw the giant replicas of a mammoth and cave bear in the foyer.  He said, "ELEPHANT!" And "BEAR!"  I finally found where the story hour was being held (by this point, we were 1/2 hour late), and he walked in the room, made a big circle, and walked out again.  That was that.  Just not interested.  He then proceded to amuse himself by walking up and down the stairs to the upper and lower level of the museum.  It was exhausting.




He became a bit fussy and I asked him what he wanted and eventually he said, "HOME."  So back we went, to trek towards the train station once again.  We had another long wait.  I managed to distract him by giving him one of his animal books to read, and he promptly ripped out two of the pages.  "No, William, we don't rip pages in books!" I said.

The train arrived and we boarded, while he was still clutching his torn book.  We sat down together and he held the book out to me.  In a tone of both impishness and regret, he said to me "I RIP PAGE."

He did not want to get off the train at our stop, so I decided we could stay on until the next one.  It would be a slightly farther walk back to our house, but more through residential areas.  I knew at this point I would be carrying him most of the way, and I thought I'd prefer walking through quiet streets rather than a busy road.

So we got off the train and headed for home.  He was moving very slowly and I said, "William, would you like me to hold you?"  He said, "HOLD YOU."  So I picked him up and carried him the rest of the way.  My back ached.  My arms hurt so bad.  He laid his head against my shoulder and wrapped his arms tight, tight around me.  I said, "William, what would you like for lunch?"  He said, "CHEEZ-ITS!"  I laughed.  "You can't have Cheez-its for lunch!  How about you have some cheese instead?"  He giggled.  "NOOO."  "How about some apple?" I offered.  He giggled again and said no.  "Well, what else would you like, then?" I asked.  He thought for just a second and replied, "CAKE!"

It is really nice to have these little conversations with each other.  For so long, I have wondered what is going on in his mind, and although it is still mainly a mystery to me, it feels good to see it bit by bit.

Thanks for reading.



Anonymous said...

Loved loved loved seeing the beautiful GARDENS thru WILLs eyes!!!!! awesome!!!!! He will be able to Give TOURS there some day !!! ALways love hearing about his busy little life!! Hugs and love to you all!! mawmaw nan and paw paw rick

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