Being silly and giving my oldest boy a snuggle and his sweet little voice spouts off a crisp and odd sentence. I would have been so proud if I had understood what was happening. My 4 year old, first born son, stood in front of me with a stone cold look on his face and said,
“I hate you, Beastie.”
At first I looked around too see if he was pretending, then I explained that hate means to really really not like something and we try not to use that word, especially not toward people we love. Then he explained in his best layperson impression,
“I said that yike Mawefahcent in the movie. She says that, and it’s bad, but she’s really good and just doesn’t want to show it. She pretends to hate the girl. She means wuv but she says hate. It’s not bad manners, Mom.”
It was only after he skipped away, happily mumbling to himself, that the full force of it all hit me. My little person was using movie quotes to communicate with me and he understood the concept of pretending not to like something so as not to be seen a certain way. Oh, how my heart swelled and shrunk all at once. I admired his candor and feared for his hiden feelings.
Tonight after he had snuck into our room for the second time, and 3 hours past bedtime, I whispered in his ear as I hugged him into a perfect tiny spoon position,
“I love you, Beastie.”
The smile and giggle that resulted was worth a thousand excuses to be awake at that moment. To savor his smell, his sleep drunk slur, his loosening hug as his arms gave way to fatigue. My sweet, smart, amazing, Beastie.