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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Tuesday was my son's fifth birthday. On Monday, we went to a birthday party for two of our neighbors at one of those inflatable bouncy places. This particular place is not a chain so it is a little more, shall we say "homey" than most of these types of places. And there are lots and lots and lots of mirrors on the wall because when it is not being used as an inflatable bounce place for kids birthday parties it is used as a gym where competitive cheerleading squads practice. Thanks to these mirrors, I got a nice 2 hour long head to toe view of myself and if that doesn't make you want to go on a diet, I don't know what will. I even turned down the birthday cake...which I would never normally do.

Since this isn't a chain they play whatever kind of music they want to play. Normally, they play high- energy songs like "Who Let the Dogs Out" and "YMCA". But on Monday, Miss Deborah decided to mellow it out a little with some kiddie tunes. Right as she switched CDs, Peter ran and jumped into my arms and then "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" came on. Instinctively I started swaying to the music and singing it aloud to him.

As I was holding him and singing, memories of Gymboree Play class came flooding into my head. Instantly I was taken back to Peter at age 9 months sitting on my lap during one of the classes. I can remember tapping his head, shoulders, knees and toes to the beat of the music. Tears welled up in my eyes when I realized he was five years old now and that the time had passed in what has seemed like just a moment.

I am not a very nostalgic person. My husband likes to tell me that I have no soul. Usually he tells me this as I am throwing away junk souvenirs like ticket stubs, baseball programs, boarding passes from businesses trips, brochures picked up from rest stops, etc, My husband thinks that if anything has been in our house for more than two weeks it has a history with us and we should not destroy it. (Which probably means that he wants me to hang on to that old tuna salad in the back of the fridge.)

So even though I am not the least bit nostalgic, as soon as that song came on, I felt his life flash before my eyes in an instant. I could not believe that the same little baby that used to sit on my lap and try to pop the Gymboree bubbles as they floated past his face, could suddenly feel so long and lanky in my arms. And how could it be that the same baby that used to want nothing more than to be held by me and never wanted to be more than a few feet away from me could suddenly say, "Put me down Mom. I want to go play with my friends."

I've been humming "Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes" all day and am always teary-eyed by the time I get to "eyes and ears, a mouth and a nose". Maybe it's PMS or maybe I'm turning into a softy in my old age. Or maybe, just maybe, I have a soul after all. (And Dan, no this does not mean we are keeping the holey socks in your dresser drawer. I've seen them and it's time they go!)

Happy Birthday, Peter.

This is Peter holding a Bionicle he received for his birthday. He was a very happy boy!


jennwa said...

The time flies by. Soon he will be in college.
Happy Birthday Peter !!!!!!

Megan Cobb said...

Like sands through the hourglass... so are the days of our lives. Sigh. So trite, but so true. I hope he had an awesome birthday! Hugs to the sniffling Mama.

Pam said...

Aw, I think you are nostalgic. You may not physically hold onto things, but you hold onto your memories. Who needs things to clutter up our lives when you have them inside your head?

Isn't it funny the way that a song or smell can instantly transport us back to a certain point in time?

Honey+2B's said...

I know how you feel...I wish they stayed babies a little longer, maybe an extra year, it goes too fast.
Happy 5th Birthday Peter!!

Honey+2B's said...

We used to play a lullaby CD for Ariana everynight while I nursed her and then put her in bed. One night not so long ago, Alan played it and I lost it, I cried like a baby! She's only 2, I can't imagine how emotional I will get when she turns 5.