Today we took Levi on his first trip to the beach. Just as I suspected, he LOVED it. As soon as I set him down he was throwing the sand around, digging his feet in and seemed right at home. I know he loved the freedom from his shoes/bar and it was so fun to see a glimpse of how things will be once he is truly free of them! He loves his bath, so the ocean was like heaven and he couldn't get enough of splashing around. I had to ruin the fun at one point when he was shaking, chattering and his lips were turning purple and he was not happy with me! (His caregivers would have been appalled!!)
It's such a blessing watching this little boy continue to experience life to the fullest. I love to see him encounter things for the first time....to watch the wonder in his face, and the excitement he shows. Basically we've just been busy enjoying life, especially the joys of spring/summer weather! Feeding the ducks, dinners outdoors, playgrounds, farms, strawberry picking, the zoo, pony rides, ice cream, and now the beach! Sometimes I stop and consider what he would be doing if he was still back at the baby home. I do believe he was blessed to be in a good place and he did get to play outside....but to miss out on all of this? It just makes me so sad for all of the sweet children missing out on truly experiencing life.....
We were just talking yesterday about how it's been just about 5 months since Levi has come home and how that sounds so short! We can't really remember life without him and he has grown and learned so much in that short time, it's hard to believe! It's interesting because we are starting to see some new behaviors that we feel show he is really starting to understand that he has a voice...that we hear him and are listening and that we care what he has to say! In some ways parenting Levi is similar to parenting Caleb...but in other ways, it's very different. In the past whenever I would leave the room to dry my hair or get ready, Levi would come crawling to where I was, face plant and cry for me to pick him up. It made things a bit challenging, but I knew he just needed me...needed to know I was there and to feel secure. As of recently, he'll come to where I am, play near me for a second and then crawl back to wherever he was and continue playing. The first time he did it, I peaked out wondering what was going on....he just crawled happily away. So precious.....just needs to check in.....and then he's okay.
Almost from day one, Levi was fairly comfortable going to anyone who held out their arms for him. He's pretty easy going and usually assumed he would get a little closer to whatever he wanted if he went to the next person : ) If the person had glasses, or fun jewelry, he was even more apt to go! Just recently, however, he has started to pick and choose when he wants to leave my arms. I was surprised at first, but it coincides with so many other signs that he is realizing he has the option of saying no. Honestly, I love that he sometimes chooses to stay with me, holds on a little tighter or leans in towards me and wants his mommy. Such progress.
Then there's the not quite as exciting sign that this little boy knows what he wants and doesn't want! He has recently decided that there are just certain bites of his food that he would prefer to spit out....okay more rollllll out of his mouth, then flail around to be sure they get in every crevice around. The first time he did it, about 6 bites into a meal he has always enjoyed, I thought he must be sick. This tiny little boy can EAT! He eats and eats and eats some more and sometimes I wonder if we'll finish breakfast in time for lunch! So spitting out food six bites in was a huge red flag. Then it continued.....sometimes the first bites of a meal, sometimes in the middle.....sometimes he'd spit out one thing, then eat the rest of it, spitting out another part of the meal. No rhyme or reason.....just deciding he wanted to...or didn't want to. I'm not sure Luke's too keen on this one, but I've started to smile when he does it.....I hear you little one!!
As much as the ladies through Early Intervention love their time with Levi, they've cut back their hours with him since...well...he's just so smart! I can say that without being boastful because it is no reflection on me!! We all just watch him in amazement and get excited about everything he does....see that? Oh wow look at how he just ___! It's been fun and I'm glad I took advantage of it....but he didn't really need it : )
Some of our adventures.......Loving living life together!!!
Feeding the ducks......they were there, I promise.
First trip to the beach : )
Splashing around like a crazy man!
Pony rides....serious business!
Hugs, kisses, hugs...more hugs, more kisses......(this is likely why our sweet son kisses everything, including rocks, toys etc. : )