Friday, May 23, 2008

Birthday reflections

His delivery was extremely traumatic.  His days as an infant were exhausting. And today, as he turns eight, I actually have a hard time remembering those days even though I remember thinking then that I never would.

Second grade has absolutely been my favorite year with Harrison.  He has changed in many ways.  For example, last Fall he suddenly became a football fan.  He would watch any NFL game that might be on and could stay engaged.  I loved watching him pick a team (usually by color of jersey alone) and then cling to that team as if he had been a fan of theirs forever.  What amazed me the most was that the loyalty would extend into emotion.   If "his" team lost, he would get pretty upset, although not always appropriately as often his emotion would be anger towards the other team.  He may have gotten this fanaticism from his grandmother.  My mother used to clean the house on Saturdays with the University of Minnesota football games blaring from every radio in the house.  They all had to be loud so that she could hear them from the bathrooms.  I can remember her screaming if they blew a play, or lost a down.  Sundays, however, she would sit and watch the Vikings play.  Most often, though, she would get so emotional that she would have to get up and leave the room when things got heated or exciting.  
His athleticism on the field has improved this year.  Through last Fall, his soccer ability was fair.  He was easily distracted and often had to be coerced into attending practices or games.  This Spring has brought a new player.  He actually has become somewhat of a leader on the team.  It's as if his limbs and coordination are finally all on the same page.  He also has gained a bit of speed.  We have no idea where this came from, though, as neither his father or I are fast runners.

Academically, he continues to perform well.  He still hates homework, but wants to please his teachers and hand it in done correctly.  This quality is something I love and hate at the same time.  I want him to want to achieve and perform, but I don't want him to be too hard on himself.  I really don't like it when he gets a 94% on a math test and then berates himself when he sees the problems he missed.  I never thought I'd have to worry about self-esteem issues this early with my boy.

I remember at the end of last school year, a neighbor was making some comments about the new principal.  She was having a hard time making an appointment with her as she wanted to get to know Ms. K.  I told her if she wanted to hang out with Ms. K - her daughter would have to misbehave and then she'd have lots of time with her.  Yesterday Harrison mentioned, on the way home from school, that he had not been to the principal's office at all during 2nd grade.  He even quoted the school's mission - "I've been responsible, respectful AND safe."  It was so cute.

He hasn't changed too much physically this past year.  He wants to keep his hair long like his older brother, but that's about it in the growth department.  He's one of the shortest boys in his class and he and Ella's height and weight are identical.  I am often asked if my children are twins.

Tonight, after his baseball game, we let Harry pick a restaurant for dinner.  He chose "Noodles" because it has fast service and is relatively close to home.  He really wanted to get home and finish working on the Star Wars Legos he received as gifts.  He's become obsessed with Star Wars the last few months.  He has watched most of the movies including one today - which he watched twice in a row.  The kids were off from school and I decided to indulge him in that birthday wish.  Now I don't know how to get him to stop humming the Star Wars theme song - or how to get the tune out of my head.  

Happy Birthday sweet boy - what a joy you are to your father and I.


CJHeart said...

Happy Birthday Harrison! I don't comment often but it's been a joy watching you grow up through this blog.

blackbird said...

Happy Birthday Harry!

Anne said...

Happy Birthday, Harry!

Hey, there's a lady on who made my Gus (first grade) a Jedi robe out of brown fleece for only $20 plus shipping if Harry's obsession continues like it has over here. And there are tons of Star Wars grade school chapter books out there if he's into reading.

It's all Star Wars all the time with my kids.

TBG said...

Happy Happy Birthday Harrison!

Sounds like a great year!

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to Harry!