We went to the doctor this morning for our two-year-old check-up. All looks well and healthy, but ohmygod this kid did not like the doctor today. I managed to snap a quick phone photo before our pediatrician dared to enter the room and (gasp!) listen to his heartbeat and look in his ears. He looks happy here, but mere minutes later, it was insanity.
He has never even had an ear infection on his life, so there shouldn’t be a bad association with it at all, but after trying a million different approaches to tricking him into allowing a glimpse in his ears, I had to resort to holding him down for it. Our doctor said he must have remembered the sting of the immunization from before, and now he hates the office. Point taken. Because when the nurse came in with the shot, you could hear him screaming at least a mile away before she was anywhere close to him at all. Loudest cry ever. Poor kid. We survived, and I rewarded with french fries on the way home, so sanity is restored here.
But it made me realize that he’s remembering so much these days, and it adds both joy and pressure as a parent, I think. I know he is only two, and he won’t remember pieces of our lives now when he is older, but I really do believe that somehow these memories make a mark even if they aren’t recalled in absolute clarity as an adult. I love thinking about forming memories and associations in someone’s little mind.
This Saturday was his actual birthday even though his party was last weekend, and we decided to pay a visit to the local fair that morning for some quality cuisine.
And I hope he grows to remember that for all of mom’s granola-making, whole-wheat baking, candy-withholding ways, it’s perfectly okay to shovel greasy onion rings in your mouth on a few select occasions. He wanted to ride all the big ones, but he settled for the ponies, and he was really impressed with himself.
It was such a great way to spend a fall morning, and we’ve also made time to celebrate more fall lately with a walk in Great-Grandaddy’s garden and a feast of fresh broccoli.
And the best part is that these memories are held by the both of us and probably more cherished by me since I know how sweet and candy-coated those childhood memories become when you grow a few years and find them in the back of your mind associated with some smell or sound or feeling. Even the greasy carnival food and garden-dirty broccoli take on a quality that really means something more.