I don't know how the average 1 year old interacts with the people around him - my experience is limited to one child. But judging by the comments that every stranger on the street corner makes, BB is a particularly happy and socially engaging baby. He makes eye contact, smiles, and giggles for almost everyone he sees. It is an endearing trait.
Not surprisingly, most people make some comment regarding their own experience. The older generation with their "I remembers" I can easily tolerate. It does take a few minutes out of my day to make these trips down memory lane, but I can almost always afford the time. However, the comments from people who have children between the ages of 10 and 18 always cause me to pause and think. Generally, the begin with some complaint about their child's current behaviour patterns and they always finish by saying "Enjoy it while you can" or some near approximation.
I think I understand where they are coming from and I know it is just idle chitchat. But I am often tempted to say something to try to make them understand exactly how much I am enjoying my son.
I think we are blessed with an extraordinarily even-tempered child. Which makes our time together so enjoyable. I would have to be a hard-hearted bitch to not enjoy my son. How could anyone resist those baby giggles, so rarely interrupted by baby tears? I am certainly not so used to him that I fail to comprehend the magic of each breath he takes.
Yesterday we went swimming, just the two of us. Today we went to the park. He is my world and I am his. I fully and completely appreciate how brief this moment in time is. I marvel daily at everything that he is and everything that he is becoming.
I have my frustrations, but I must admit they are few. He is such a good-tempered, easy baby. Through no virtue of my own, I find my role as mother a (relatively) simple task. I know that will change, but for now I am wholly content as things are.
So I write my reply here: I am not missing his babyhood. I do not count the minutes waiting for him to be more independent. I am enjoying every moment of the person his is today. And tomorrow, when his cries of "DAAAAADDDDD!" wake me and wake his father at 6:30 in the morning, I will happily make room for him on our bed, wait for his father to bring him in, and securely gather his warm body in next to mine for his morning nurse. I will marvel at the little hands that play with my pyjama buttons and his stuffed animal as he nurses. And this will merely begin my day of wonder-filled moments. And the day after that? I know I will enjoy that, too.
I can still hardly believe he is here. The juxtaposition of his life to his brother's life constantly sends my mind reeling in disbelief. How is it possible that he is here and sleeping in the next room? But he is. He's my son and he's here to stay.
I can't help but enjoy him.