Liam's Forever Family Day 2012

We moved out of our house for the renovation May 26th.  We moved back into our house, and slept in our own beds, last Saturday, September 22nd.  During the summer months, we slept in a couple dozen beds.  Now, we are living simply until construction is completely done inside.   With just mattresses on the floor that we are calling beds, we are sleeping at home.  With a quilt that floats from unfinished room to unfinished room, we are picnicking at home.  With a flurry of activity around the house and construction, it’s alarming how special days are slipping through the cracks. So it’s time to put a pin on the calendar for this week: Liam’s Forever Family Day is Thursday, September 27th.  Six years ago we brought 9-month-old Liam home from South Korea.  And now he’s 48 inches tall.

Liam is the man with a view.  He sees the whole playing field in soccer and in hockey.  He sees the whole chess board.  He sees the whole maze.  To me and my wacky, challenged sense of depth perception, this is amazing.  He sees the whole picture.

Desperate for the hand-held Nintendo DS, which I removed from the house three years ago, Liam has been reading like a trooper since school started.  I told him when he wanted to read as much as he wanted the DS, we would talk about its return but not until fall.  Since August 22nd, I have been reminded that fall is on September 22nd.  Forgetting momentarily about the DS, he looked out the window September 22nd and somberly noted that there weren’t any leaf piles to jump in.

Liam is strong.  Strong.  Strong. Strong.  Strong-willed.  Strong-tempered.  Strong thinker.  Sometimes in my attempt with the “removal of privilege” system, which I KNOW works equally as poorly as the “reward system” with this child, we butt heads.  “Yeah, Mom, I don’t care about that.”  After a conversation this summer with a mom of a similarly wired kid, it clicked: I am Liam's greatest commodity.  And I can’t take me away from him.

In a heated discussion on our way to floor hockey, we were going at it.  When I should bite my tongue, I engage.  It’s like two mountain goats butting heads over a single blade of grass.  With a snarl thrown in my direction – and my return motherly-snarl saying “don’t-snarl-at-me” – Liam runs onto the gym floor.  I stay to watch; Liam has said he doesn’t want me to run errands.  Today, I could use an errand or two to recover from the head butt.

Fifteen minutes into the practice, they start a game using hockey sticks and whiffle balls.  With no protective barriers, the ball flies off walls, benches, and parents.  The ball and six boys come charging toward me.  From the pack, I hear a loud and clear and slightly ferocious warning, “HEY!!  Be careful of my mom!!”

Ahhhh…  Glad I didn’t run errands.

Much is the same, yet much has changed since Liam's 2010 Forever Family Day.