Eight years ago tomorrow, Craig and I got married. Three years ago today, we brought Jacob home from the hospital. His birthday seems so far away already (and it was only last Monday), so I definitely see how that week seemed to last forever. Three years later, I walk into daycare and find out that all of Jacob's stuff has been moved into the three-year-old room. He's not officially moved up, but he's pretty much there. He's had a few days visiting that room, but despite the fact that his third birthday has come and gone, I didn't expect this to happen so soon. I figured his behavior issues or potty training status wouldn't make him among the first to move up, or if nothing else, the group of kids who have turned three in the past week would move up closer to the fall when the new school year started and the four year olds headed off to kindergarten. This took me by surprise, and it's a whole new world. It's a classroom with pets, different toys, and most kids in underwear. I'm hoping that peer pressure comes in handy and Jacob decides he's ready to be a big boy.
Perhaps he senses it already. Yesterday morning he woke up dry, possibly for the first time ever. Considering we were staying at my parents' and we had a bit of a late night, I was particularly shocked. We put on a pull-up for church, and once after the service we hit up the bathroom. He was dry and had a fantastic pee. It was so long that he gave up pushing his penis down (oh, the joy of training a boy) and we almost had a disaster. Fortunately the damage was minimal, and with every subsequent trip to the potty for the rest of the day, he was dry. Sometime we reminded him, sometimes he asked. We got in a couple pees at my cousin's graduation party, and he even asked in a very unfamiliar place, in the midst of a very bizarre moment (more on that later), so it was a good sign. He stayed dry right through the evening, and even asked to go late at night, long after he should have been sleeping, after he woke up following his "nap" on the drive home. He did not wake up dry this morning, and I know his pull-up was wet as we were leaving daycare, but he did well this evening in big boy underwear. He didn't ask to go, but he did concede to going and did fine. So, baby steps for my blossoming big boy. At least it finally feels like we're getting somewhere!
The odd situation I mentioned earlier was a little visit we paid to a couple down the street from my parents. They have a daughter, Nora, who's a couple months older than Jacob (you may remember her from the ill-fated Easter Egg Hunt), and just had a little boy, Kurt. I was dying to go visit and see a tiny baby for the first time in a long time. It was a little deja vu, since I vividly remember going to visit Nora when she was first born and I was pregnant. I loved watching her stretch and move, because it helped me picture all of the crazy stuff my baby was doing in utero. I hadn't held a little baby since Jacob, and wow, was it odd. I never held other people's new babies (other than my niece and nephews when they were first born), and while I wasn't nearly as freaked out by it as I used to be, it took some getting used to again. I forgot what it was like to hold something that tiny and light. Kurt was actually bigger than Jacob when he was born, and he's nearly a month old, but oh, how tiny everything was! The little baby stretches and funny little faces were so sweet. It was a joy to hold a baby like that again, but it was scary at the same time! The thought of doing that again was made that much more vivid in just those 10-15 minutes. Of course, the second I got the baby, Jacob started freaking out...not outwardly, but we could tell he wasn't quite sure what to make of it. After a while he asked me to "put it down", but we did our best to assure him that we weren't bringing the baby with us and he was still our special boy. Not a good sign of what may be to come, but hopefully having some advance notice (and an extra year of maturity) when we add a permanent addition will help. So maybe our big boy isn't ready to be a big brother yet, but I think he will be when the time comes.
We also saw a bunch of pictures this weekend from our friends, the McDonoughs, who added a new baby to their family the day before Jacob's birthday. Their son Colin is a couple months younger than Jacob, and he looks like such a big boy, particularly now that he's a big brother and especially in comparison to his tiny 5 lb. 15 oz. sister, Kelly. I can't wait to meet her and hope we can pull off a vacation in their area this summer sometime, once Craig's work situation works itself out. Both things really made me think about Jacob as a big brother, and made me simultaneously excited and terrified to do it all again. We have plenty of time to prepare for that, of course, but it was quite the reminder.
I still can't believe that Jacob is moving up with the big kids, and I really hope he's up for the challenge. I hope I am, too.