My toddler does this fairly new thing that I gather is mostly involuntary and it’s just so cute to me. When he’s excited about something or first sees someone that he’s happy to see come in the room, he gasps out loud happily. Maybe his Gram (my mom) comes over or Jammie Daddy gets home from work or he sees a toy he hasn’t played with in awhile (sometimes I put a few away and switch it up from time to time) or I come upstairs after writing for a couple hours in the den while he’s played with dad or I deliver a yummy plate of food to the table – whatever the case it is evident that he is happy, excited and thankful about it. This gasp makes me happy, too.
My best friend and I were pregnant at the same time and due a day apart. (Though since I went so early and she went so late, our kids are five weeks apart in age!) We get to see each other once or twice a year even though we live several states away and it’s always wonderful. We pick up right where we left off (though we talk almost daily so that does help). As great friends and parents, we can hope our kids will be friends but we really have no control over the fact. I last saw her and her daughter this past March and our kiddos played so well together. It was so delightful to watch as my son is only 2 and though we have playdates and see friends with kids and he plays a little, he hasn’t played this much with anyone yet! My son still talks about her. He asks for her and evidently misses her. He has one other good toddler friend in town but definitely seems most fondly of my best friend’s daughter (This is not me being biased because it’s my best friend’s child – he really does seem to care about her and I do wish there was a local friend he acted this way about but he picks his friends and this one is several states away). He has a couple friends in town but I have never seen him get as excited as he gets when we video chat my friend’s daughter. My friend is a single mom and in an MBA program, so you can imagine her life is quite busy. The other morning I texted her knowing that her daughter was likely already at daycare but just thought wouldn’t it be awesome if they were still home! My wish came true. She replied to say they got a late start and the kids could video chat for a few minutes. I asked if my son if he wanted to video chat with her and he immediately dropped his toys that he was playing with, climbed up on the couch (the same seat we have read stories in, snuggled under the blanket all winter but now it’s spring and this was a very warm morning), put the blanket over himself to get cozy and waited for me to grab my laptop. As soon as I called them I witnessed the loudest, most happy gasp filled with excitement that I am certain he’s ever made. Both kids on the screen with BIG smiles at each other and it was absolutely precious. Sure, we don’t have screen time often at all and usually I choose to avoid the use of technology or devices for his play but with friends and family so far away, video chatting has been such a treat and allows us to connect with loved ones who live so far away.
At that present time I wish so badly that she could come play at our house and that my friend and I lived in the same state and then that feeling he felt during his gasp of excitement would continue throughout our day. I would love for time to freeze just for a few more minutes to let my son enjoy this lovely feeling for just a little longer. Instead we had to say our goodbyes and I love yous and our so longs for now, but the sound of my son’s gasp and the memory of the smiles upon both children’s faces is going to be imprinted in my mind and heart for a very, very long time. Want to see their faces?