Aiden has been very curious about life and death recently. I don’t know why this all started, but it’s amazing how much death a 3-year old can be exposed to. When the questions started cropping up, they came up a lot.
We have many non-fiction books about dinosaurs, all of which mention meat-eaters / carnivores. Some of them have pictures of dinosaurs being eaten.
In many movies, characters will die. The Land Before Time, Shrek, and so many more.
What is that dinosaur doing? Why is that dinosaur lying down? Where did the Mommy dinosaur go? Will the Mommy dinosaur come back? What is in that dinosaur’s mouth?
He seems to have some understanding now of what is happening, even remarking that the victim dinosaur went “Ow ow ow” when it was being attacked.
The curiosity about death has not just been restricted to dinosaurs, however. It has flowed into conversations about our own food, since Aiden is curious where ‘meat’ comes from and we were running into issues of him simply not believing us (he thought we were joking about the bacon coming from pigs).
Given my cat also has cancer, I have been preparing Aiden for the fact that she won’t always be with us. He’s asked many hard questions about her upcoming death and how it will happen and where she will go. He seems to grasp that it won’t be a good thing and it will make him sad. Those were very hard questions for me.
Perhaps in connection with these questions, he also began asking again how babies are born and where they come from. One of his most profound questions was about where he was before he was in my tummy.
Given that religion is not a part of our family, we’ve been straightforward in our responses to his questions. Still, they have not been easy to answer!
Expecting we would get at least some snow this year, we went out and got a sled that both boys could sit in together. We previously bought Aiden a sled but found that Aiden tensed up too much and tipped over backwards when he was being pulled, so it wasn’t the right sled for him at the time. We found a good little sled this year that had a higher back and could potentially fit both boys. Sadly, it hasn’t snowed!
Ianiv took Aiden up to Mount Seymour about a month ago for his first time sledding. It was a busy day, but Aiden loved playing on the little hill, building a snowman and playing in the snow with his Daddy.
It’s really too bad we haven’t had more snow! I have so many memories of growing up in North Van simply sledding on the local hills – streets or parks – and that totally beats a mountain trip! Maybe next year?
We took Aiden skating during the Christmas break for the first time. We opted to go during a Public Skate time, which worked the best with the kids’ schedules. Unfortunately, we did not know until we got there that the skate aids (like the skating walker) is only available during Family Skate times, not Public Skate times. Who knew?
Of course, once you tell your 3 year old that he’s going skating for the first time, you kind of need to follow through. Since Damien was going to be due for a nap half way through our time at the arena, Ianiv opted to go skating so I could nap Damien in the Ergo. Unfortunately, Ianiv has only skated a handful of times and not even recently. Ianiv soon found he was not so steady on the ice!
Well, Aiden was excited and eager to get out on the ice. He balanced ok on the skates when he was walking but had absolutely no stability on the ice, even just standing. Ianiv basically propped Aiden up under the arms to take him around the rink and it was not a fast circuit!
Next time we will be more prepared for skating – still, Aiden enjoyed his first skating trip!
Aiden began solo swim lessons a few weeks ago. We haven’t taken swim lessons for about a year, so we were not sure how Aiden would transition into a class that did not involve a parent. Apparently, we need not have worried! As I had secretly hoped, he did fantastically for the teacher, doing things he would never do for us: take a shower, dunk under the water, lay back in the water… all without tears!
Aiden loves his swim classes and we are hopeful that the continued lessons will help break down some of his fears about getting his face / head wet! At least it’s a great activity for the weekend!!
Aiden is a very loving big brother. There is nothing that warms my heart more than seeing Aiden show affection for Damien.
Aiden loves to come upstairs with me while I breastfeed Damien; he loves to be the first one to say Hi to Damien in his crib and ask “Did you have a good nap?” and comes over several times to cuddle Damien while I’m nursing (he obviously doesn’t get to nurse much while this goes on). He loves to share his books with Damien and to help me read to him. He tries to give Damien his blanky, though Damien doesn’t seem to care for it yet.
Though Aiden is just as likely to take a toy away from Damien when he’s feeling left out, he’ll also bring him toys or play alongside him in banging, shaking or gumming on toys. He actively engages with Damien to make him smile and laugh, which is increasingly easier to do. Damien’s first belly laugh was for Aiden and he continues to be the one he’s most likely to laugh for. Aiden, my cuddly boy, also enjoys having his “Aiden and Damien cuddles” too, asking to hug or lie with him lately, which is new. If Damien is not around, Aiden misses him, and asks to play with him.
Aiden seems proud to know that he can make Damien happy and that Damien misses him on preschool days. We give Aiden a chance to help with Damien whenever we can, though he doesn’t always want to. Just this week Aiden asked to hold Damien for the first time, though Damien was fussy and it didn’t last. Still, it was a beautiful gesture. This same week he told me that “Damien is my best friend.”
I know that these boys will not always get along and that we will soon see friction as a result of Damien crawling / walking to Aiden’s toys, which he’ll then chew on. That will just be the start of ‘issues’ they will see as they grow up. Brothers will love each other and hate each at times as they grow up but I hold on to the hope that, despite it all, they will always be friends.