Fatherhood Adventures

It may be a sign of things to come, but I’m convinced Beckett has an addictive personality.

Presumably all toddler-aged kids are like this – they fascinate on a single thing, wear it out and then move on to another object of obsession. I know my son is this way.

The latest craze that came out of nowhere is an affinity for hats. It does not matter to him what they look like or who it belongs to, but for some reason for the last week he has been wearing one all around the house.

The oddest thing is he prefers to have his hat on backwards and cocked slightly sideways, which at 22 months old is quite cute. Try and straighten it on his head and he will quickly readjust, tip it backwards and tilt to one side or another.

It’s quite hilarious and highly random because I remember many hats being tossed aside by him in the not so distant past. He never liked them before. It was to the point when we went to the beach we had to resort to those caps with the strings under the chin to protect him from the sun. He would even figure out in short order how to weasel out of those straps if given the opportunity.

Around the same time this cap fad developed came an absolute fascination with trucks and Matchbox cars. These have dominated his attention of late, and he has now developed a little independent streak. He seems to like to take his box of cars and trucks into another room and plays with them by himself.

This is all well and good so long as he can be heard. It’s pretty easy to figure out what he’s doing even if you can’t see him. The sounds can be relied upon to give an idea what he’s up to at any given moment.

It’s those extended periods of silence that can be bothersome, particularly with an adventurous and fearless toddler who was once found in a corner trying to pull off a handstand while holding a sippie cup. It’s during times like this that I admire his courageous nature but question his sanity.

One afternoon recently, I was feeding Carson, our 5-month-old, and Beckett wandered into the other room to play with his trucks as he often does. He’s still essentially ignoring his younger brother at this point. He’s too boring from him.

For a minute or so, there was nothing but silence, causing inevitable concern. When I quickly got to him, I found him lying on his back on the floor, spinning one of his little car’s tires.

How awesome I thought to myself as I got down on the floor with him and joined in the fun. Before I could relish the moment, he quickly managed to leap up, jump on my chest and quickly was able to maneuver himself so that he was sitting on my throat. For some reason, he thinks standing and sitting down repeatedly on my throat is hilarious.

There’s such a thing as a mom’s intuition and I am a big believer in it.

My wife’s keen sense was on full display this week when our littlest one came down with an ear infection. Carson had been a tad off all day and a high temperature of 102.9 eventually landed her and him in the pediatrician’s office.

This was the illness I had been anticipating. My oldest son has never had an ear issue, which is the most common source of sickness and issues with young kids. No, Beckett preferred to get so sick once an emergency room visit was in order over dehydration concerns. He likes to take matters to extremes, evidence by another ER visit on Christmas morning for stitches to the back of his head.

Of course, now that I have put this down on paper, he will probably develop something in his ears tonight.

Nonetheless, the long and short of the ear infection so far with Carson has just been some uneasiness. For a few days, he was unable to find his groove, although he is on medication that should address it soon enough.

In the meantime, I have no problem admitting my wife is best apt to handle illnesses with the kids. She’s cool under pressure when it comes to the boys, while I tend to be frantic about unknown illnesses and anything that causes them to be a bit different than normal.

A temperature reading that high would have freaked me out and sent me running for the Tylenol or Motrin for them, leading inevitably to me searching for the Excedrin Migraine pills.

Admittedly, I have little experience to rely on here, but I think my eldest son’s current age is my favorite time yet.

On the cusp of turning 23 months old, Beckett is so much fun, particularly because he’s just an unpredictable mess these days.

He’s into absolutely everything and that consequently is keeping us quite busy going about protecting him from himself. Additionally, he is talking quite a bit now and you never know what he’s going to say.

With all this comes the fact that he knows right from wrong. He simply leans toward the wrong on occasion.

I find it equally frustrating and hilarious that he will look you directly in the eye and do something he’s not supposed to do. He knows better but does it anyway.

For example, every night at bath time we go through the exact same routine. He constantly tries to stand up and run around in the tub. It’s a battle of wills. I admit to backing down a little and allowing him to stand up in the tub. However, I don’t let him run around. He knows this and consequently he likes to test me by lifting his legs up and down in a stomping fashion, all the while staring right at me with a smile. He’s basically teasing me and trying to push the proverbial envelope already.

I figured at some point my kid would make fun of me and test the boundaries, but I didn’t think it would come so soon.

About The Author: Steven Green

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The writer has been with The Dispatch in various capacities since 1995, including serving as editor and publisher since 2004. His previous titles were managing editor, staff writer, sports editor, sales account manager and copy editor. Growing up in Salisbury before moving to Berlin, Green graduated from Worcester Preparatory School in 1993 and graduated from Loyola University Baltimore in 1997 with degrees in Communications (journalism concentration) and Political Science.