If I had to describe him in one sentence…
I’d have to say “he’s all over the place.”
He’s a complete goofball. He pulls gardening gloves over his boots and stomps around like a Hobbit (even though he doesn’t know what a Hobbit is). Hobbit feet notwithstanding, he continues to love bare feet and will use literally all activities as an excuse to take off his shoes. We’re home! Off come the shoes and socks. We’re in the car! Off come the shoes and socks. We’re at the beach on a cold day in March! Off come the shoes and socks. We’re at the park with mulch, rocks, and the occasional syringe behind the bushes where we play! Off come the shoes and socks. A recent goofball move – the other morning he wakes up and starts walking around the room with his hands in front and behind his head while making a silly face. We start trying to guess what kind of animal or creature he is and he says “I was just trying to make you laugh.” It worked.
He’s curious and loves to learn. He loves books and storytelling in general. He always wants to go to the Pacific Science Center, the aquarium, and the Museum of Flight. If we could only fill all his time with things to learn about, we would probably see a lot less of…
His aggression and attitude. Relative to his age, it’s all pretty normal I think. He probably uses his words better than most, like “I’m frustrated because..” and so on. But still, sometimes he hits or roars instead of talking it through. His favorite thing to do when he’s frustrated about not getting his way or being told what not to do is to do exactly what we just told him not to do. He’s also learned his first two defense mechanisms: avoiding eye contact while not acknowledging what’s being said, and making a silly face while not acknowledging what’s being said.
He’s getting big. He can lift up his little sister and loves doing so. He can reach all kinds of things we don’t want him to reach. He can navigate all child safety protections and lock himself in a bathroom if he chooses. He will likely start kindergarten in five short months and he constantly claims to hate his current preschool (because of nap time). He’s got lots of energy and we need to keep up with activities. I want to build him a hamster wheel and Mama wants to start him in karate.
He’s a sweet guy and loves his sister. More often than not, he’s busy being a four year old and can’t be bothered to work on properly adjusting to the playing needs of an eighteen month old. Still, it’s clear he loves her. They say goodnight to each other at bedtime and they care if the other gets hurt. He has sweet night time conversations with his mama sometimes after he acts out. It’s hard for a four year old with tons of energy and emotion when there are two parents trying to get things done and a little sister who has more immediate (safety related) needs. All things considered, he’s doing a great job being a kid and I’m looking forward to the continued growth of Papaya as they become playmates.