We are making lots of fun new memories together this season, but it was an old memory that blew me away yesterday.
Z was playing with a little fleece scarf as I prepped dinner. This kid loves to accessorize, so he was having a good old time finding different ways to wear the scarf and I was not paying too much attention -- just thankful to have him occupied while I cooked. "Baby back-pack-pack?" (That's his word for backpack - he throws the extra syllable in there just for fun.) I looked over at him and was confused for a minute. He had wrapped the scarf around his belly and was smiling up at me like he'd done something clever. "Z baby back-pack-pack!" he announced. Oh! Finally silly mommy got it: he was pretending to have a baby wrapped on his back with the scarf. Which he has not seen since he left Ethiopia nine months ago. How crazy is that? Makes me wonder what else he remembers... My psychology background tells me that by the time he is old enough to answer the question "What do you remember from Ethiopia?" he will not have much, if anything, to say. I know that in my head, but my heart longs to hear so much more.
We can't do much to help Z keep his old memories, but we are having lots of fun making new ones together. This season has been particularly sweet, as we watch Z take in all the new experiences of his first Christmas season in America. Surprises so far: he was not scared to meet Santa and he is totally unfazed by the huge fir tree in our house. Not-so-surprising: he made loud silly noises through our whole Advent candle lighting and family devotional time, he's loving the Fisher Price nativity set, and he thinks candy canes are the best thing ever. Can't argue with that!