Responsible Owen

This is a picture of sad dejected Owen from last Monday. His wardrobe choices were questionable but that wasn’t what had him down. It had something to do with someone hitting him or kicking him but from what I understand he had done his share of abuse as well.

These past few weeks have been a view of what happens when Owen takes charge. He is really taking this oldest child thing seriously. He is trying to take over the house I think, but we won’t let that happen. Ivan my little tank won’t let that happen. Owen is still very obedient and though he does argue occasionally I am happy that his response is usually to obey.

This morning as I turned the computer on and opened Firefox, he quickly ran to my side and said, “Let’s see what the world is doing.” He really wanted to check the weather maps and see the radar pictures but as I was just opening Fox News’ website it tickled me to think of him keeping up with news around the world. It won’t be long before he’s interested in all of it I think. He already asks more questions about things he has no business asking.

Yesterday he had a bit of a rough day. From a bit of constipation to a hard fall on the steps going off the deck to a scratch from the neighborhood kitty it was all a little hard to take. He had a good time playing outside and by the time dinner and bath were over he was more than ready to go to bed. All three boys slept very well last night.

Today it is rainy and gray so I don’t expect to get a lot of outdoor time for him. However, we are behind in reading some books and doing some activities so this will be a good day for that.

I’m Four!

Owen turned four yesterday. He had a wonderfully full day.

Because Kris and I had to go to a retreat in Bowling Green, Owen and Ivan were blessed to have Todd and Christina Spitters keep an eye on them overnight Friday night. Owen loves to be there and is close in age to their middle son, Luke. I had invited them to Owen’s birthday party as well but knew that with the drive and the chaos of two extra boys over the weekend it probably wouldn’t work out for them to come. Christina offered to throw Owen a little private party on Friday night so that her boys could wish him a Happy Birthday as well. She made cupcakes and they gave him a gift and he was ecstatic! When we picked them up on Saturday, his actual birthday, he was first to the door and announced proudly as the door opened, “I’m 4! I’m 4!”

We came home and put Ivan down for a nap while Owen watched Star Wars (episode 4) with his daddy. It was his first introduction to the movie so we were curious to see how he would like it. He enjoyed it but was a little unsure of what to think. A couple of times he would jump and say, “Oh, that scared me.”

Just as the movie was ending I started getting Aron ready to leave for our planned party for Owen. Because of the baby’s arrival and being so unsure of when that would be we were apprehensive about planning a formal party for Owen. We finally decided to use an outside location and Chick-Fil-A fit the bill. They provided everything except the cake and we had about 16 kids show up last night at 5:00 for Owen’s birthday party. His first reaction to a having a 2nd party in two days was to ask Kris if he was now 5. The Chick-Fil-A Cow visited and gave everyone hugs. Owen opened gifts and loved everything he got and everyone enjoyed cake, ice cream, chicken and more chicken. We brought chicken home too, along with a good bit of cake.

Owen has been rummaging through his gifts all afternoon. He truly enjoys each thing. Kris and I bought him something he has been asking for the past couple of months. A Titan’s football helmet and uniform. He looks so cute in that helmet. The uniform has been very important to him and he is sleeping in it as I type.

Today being Sunday it was his first day in the four year old class for church. He was a little intimidated when Kris dropped him off in the gym but soon recovered when he saw his friend Conner. The two of them have become pretty tight and coincidentally share October 6 as a birthday. Conner’s mom and I compared birth stories this time around as well. She delivered a tiny little boy on September 14 and of course Aron arrived 11 days later.

I love throwing party’s for Owen as his delight is so obvious. He really enjoys every bit of attention and every gift he is given with true joy. He lights up as he opens each gift. I’m grateful that he is not so overloaded with toys that he fails to appreciate new things. I admit there are many things he takes for granted but gifts are special to him.

A few pictures of his party:

Him and Me

Owen is a big brother twice over and experiencing such new thoughts and feelings since Aron arrived. On the day of Aron’s birth I saw Owen’s confusion and frustration and I pitied him. As I labored, he waited and played happily in the playroom for a while but was constantly interested in the conversation and activity in the bedroom. He wanted to climb on me which you can imagine was not something I could tolerate as contractions were coming hard and fast. Kris set the boys up downstairs with a movie and they were completely distracted for a while. I started pushing right at lunch time which aunt Becky quickly provided for the boys as the movie was over at that same time. She told me later that my groans and yells were heard from the bedroom and both boys ate with anxious looks on their faces. Owen especially, was unhappy to wait in his chair and wanted to know what was going on. Thankfully, pushing the baby out only took 10 minutes and Owen ate faster than ever before. Kris took Aron downstairs to show them as soon as he could and then when things were a little more cleaned up in the bedroom the boys were allowed in to see mommy.

Owen’s first question to me was one of curiosity. I was sitting with my belly covered and he wanted to know if my belly had been broken. We haven’t talked in too much detail about how the baby would get out and he has been anxious for some time about what would happen to me. I reassured him that I am still in one piece and that all is well with me and the baby. His wheels were still turning and I watched him take the scene in with quiet concern. Finally, the baby was dressed and I was resting in my bed. The big brothers were allowed up to see the baby and give mommy hugs and kisses. Owen’s exuberance and self consciousness was more than he could contain and he began to bounce around on the bed a bit. Kris was quick to correct him and he settled down for a brief moment, but was back to bouncing in no time. This being too near tender mommy and tiny baby, Kris then ordered him off the bed. I knew this was not a small thing to Owen. I saw his face fall and his despair rise. All the worry he had carried over mommy and this change in the family was coming to the surface. He slowly melted to the foot of the bed and stood leaning against it looking at the rest of his family all seated cozily at the headboard with this new little member surrounded by his parents and doting middle brother…and he was not a part.
His tears came without sound and he looked at his daddy as if to say, “why don’t you want me here?” I saw it and felt it all and I felt horrible for him. He was wrong to bounce on the bed and he was wrong to disobey but I couldn’t stand to see this going on inside him. I quickly asked him to come sit on the other side of me where any activity on his part wouldn’t hurt the baby and held him close to my side explaining to him how the first day that we got to hold him we sat just like this with him wrapped in a blanket right between daddy and I and we held him and looked at him all day long. He recovered quickly and found a way to be still. He wanted to hold the baby and asks now and then to do so but is still the more disinterested of the two brothers.

He is a great helper as he promised he would be and runs to get things for me whenever asked. He plays a little more aggressively of late and seems to stand taller and know more than ever before. He is a big brother to two little guys now and seems to take on the posture of authority with his new role. He certainly needs reigning in often, but I am also very proud of him and his attitude the past week. He is a wonderful big brother.