It has been over sixteen years since I held my only son, Evan, for the very first time. After all his toes and fingers were accounted for, I relaxed and anticipated the adventures this new life would bring to mine. Right out of the shoot with this little scallywag I had already fumbled the rules of being Evan’s mom. Rule number one: If you relax you are in trouble. Rule number two: You must never under-estimate the adventures of Evan.
One of the roles that Evan didn’t enthusiastically embrace was that of a big brother. He was three when his sister, Sophi, was born and he never passed up an opportunity to remind anyone gushing over the new arrival that, “It’s just a baby. It’s no big deal.” The only aspect of the new addition that seemed to intrigue him in the least was the mystery of breastfeeding. He would often be playing or watching TV and hunt me down and ask, “So, there’s milk in those boobs?” It was like this little three-year-old person was trying to wrap his mind around the whole concept. He would playing with his toy trucks in the floor and then all of a sudden his little brain would take a detour, “Good God, is that possible? I better just check with mom one more time. That doesn’t seem right.”
One afternoon my good sense was overruled by my need to go to the store, so I ventured out to Wal-Mart, with baby on board and toddler in tow. I was standing in the checkout line and Sophi began to fuss. As the line crept slowly, Sophi’s fussiness began to escalate. I was trying to quickly unload my items onto the cashier’s conveyer belt so I could get out of the store before she reached the point of royally pissed. Evan was calmly repeating, “Mom, hey, Mom,” over and over. Impatiently I finally responded, “WHAT, Evan?” I saw his dimple twitch (the untrained eye would have missed it) and I knew it was coming. Loudly he yells, “WHY DON’T YOU LET HER CHEW ON YOUR BOOB??!!”
The man in line behind our little circus was trying hard not to laugh, which Evan must have interpreted as disbelief in the lactating capabilities of his mother and fervently jumped to my defense and yells, “Don’t laugh; there is really milk in there. There is MILK in my MOM’s BOOBS!!!!” I think Evan was expecting me to give him a high-five for setting the skeptical stranger straight. I just wanted to get the hell out of the store, but by the time I pulled out of the parking lot, I was laughing so hard I was almost crying.
Thank you, Evan, for bringing so much laughter into my life, then and now.