Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Isaac update

So, other than his guest post recently, I haven't said much about the kid that started all this blogging in the first place. That little cell cluster that showed up 8 years ago and made me violently ill, acutely terrified, exceptionally tired and joyously happy.

I haven't written about the kind of big brother he is. I take it for granted I guess you could say. While I was pregnant, everyone told him over and over how he'd be the best big brother ever. He would smile slyly at these words and stare at the floor. Finally, one day he looked up and said, “What if I'm NOT?” He is.

Just by virtue of being so big and so much in his life, Isaac is magical to Rhys. There is that. And then, there is all that is Isaac.

When Rhys was tiny and I dared put him down anywhere, his brother would find me, empty-armed and ask, “WHERE is Rhys?” “In there,” I might say, pointing to the bedroom, the blanket on the living room floor, as I attempted to make myself a sandwich or pour a glass of water. “ALL ALONE?!?” Isaac would accuse, dashing from the scene to be with the nonplussed infant.

He tolerates all the attention that is heaped on the baby with more maturity than I know I could have mustered at 7. I asked him once if it bothered him.“Not really. He's cute,” he shrugged sagely, as if the logic of it was enough for him to bear this not so small change in the focus of his world.

Isaac is attentive to a fault. We get things like this a lot: “Um, he's near the edge you know! Um, so, do you have him??? Mommy!”

The monitor often forgotten in the wrong room or turned off, Isaac is often the first one to scoop his baby brother from the crib at nap's end, his hearing attuned to the softest squeak.

Rhys has been greatly enjoying having Isaac around more with summer being summer and all. But today begins a period of camps. Isaac will be busy away from the house more for a few weeks. Doing big boy things.

We start with soccer. That's right, I'm afraid my boy has made of me an official soccer mom. Ugh. Okay, it's just a couple hours of skills in the morning at the field down the street. And maybe he'll hate it. (Was there a touch of hope in that last sentence?)

I'm skeptical. Of sports. And most specifically of coaches. There seems to be a “Type C” personality – Coach. This is the person who believes anyone can pull themselves up by their boot straps if they want to, and has been known to use that exact phrase ad nauseum. The person who believes beyond a shadow of a doubt that anything you need to know about life you can learn on the field/court/diamond. The person who is overly confident, who pushes, who shouts and uses whistles and regularly says shit like, “Let's go! Let's go! Let's see some hustle!”

When I left him this morning, Isaac was tapping a soccer ball lightly with his foot, barely moving it, in a sea of bigger kids, one of his new turquoise and neon orange cleats untied (“They had the normal kind too,” he'd told me of the purchase he'd made with his dad, waving his hand in a dismissive way). This was out of his comfort zone. Isaac did not learn to crawl one week, begin to stand the next, and go over and over again to the stairs, trying trying trying. That would be my second child.

Isaac has always been the one to hang back, ask me to come with him, watch and observe. As awesome a big brother as Isaac is to Rhys, the benefits go two ways. His baby brother will be good for him in ways he cannot yet imagine.

Over dinner, I asked Isaac what his favorite part of soccer was.

“Probably when I scored a goal,” he said.

“Oh!” I say trying not to sound too surprised. “Congratulations!”

“Yeah, I was going down the field and then another kid tried to get the ball away from me and I lost my balance and my foot knocked it into the net by accident.”

Rhys will be good for him because again tomorrow when Isaac leaves the field, hungry, hot and pushed to his limit, he will be there, squealing wildly, flailing his arms and leaning with all he's worth toward his favorite 7-year-old, like his big brother just intentionally wailed on that ball and sent it flying from mid-field into the center of the goal, winning the game in overtime.

(more pics to follow)

1 comment:

Rita said...

I love it, I love it, I love it!
Isaac is really something, and always has been! And yes, I bet Rhys will be good for him, too.

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