It hit me like a bus one afternoon while I was feeding Waylen lunch. I want to be like this kid. He was wearing a red striped shirt with two penguins on it, and he had baby food alllll over his face. He was shoving his fingers in his mouth (thank you teeth for taking FOREVER to come in), and a serious twinkle in his eyes. He is happy. I mean SO damn happy. And I want to learn to be happy like him.
He doesn’t worry about what others think of him. Hell, he doesn’t even know how to worry yet! Can you imagine that? He literally doesn’t even know how to worry. Crazy. He doesn’t worry about what he looks like, or what he wears. How much time do we spend every single day worrying about little things, or things we can’t control? Sure, as adults there are always going to be things we need to take care of, remember to do, or consider for the future. But maybe we can take a lesson from this (STILL) toothless ray of sunshine and worry a little bit less.
Little things make Waylen SO happy. I wish you could see the way his face lights up when he first sees his big brother in the morning. He gets the biggest, sweetest smile on his face when he sees Dexter. And then we get a repeat of the heart melting smiles as soon as he sees his dad. Meanwhile, I’m shuffling my feet along the floor, and grumbling to the boys not to talk too loudly until I’ve had at least a few sips of coffee. Waylen wakes up with a smile on his face, and happily shares his joy with everyone around him.
Do you know what else is great about this baby? He lets you know when something is wrong, if he needs something, or if he’s unhappy. He doesn’t hold it in, or pretend that everything’s sunshine and rainbows. That’s one thing I know I need to work on myself. If something isn’t right, or I’m unhappy about something, I need to speak up about it. Growing up, I often felt like I couldn’t talk about my feelings, or if I didn’t like something. Through years of this conditioning and witnessing others in my life keep quiet about their feelings, I became really good at it too. But this sweet little baby hasn’t experienced any of that. If he’s hungry, he fusses a little bit, and actually has recently started trying to get into my shirt on his own haha
He also doesn’t hold on to anything negative. (Yes, I know, he doesn’t hold on to anything positive right now either) This kid has endured quite a lot in his short life. He has survived a Seriously Crazy family tragedy (that’s another blog post for another day) and then moved across the country and flew on his first airplane at three weeks old. He has moved to two different houses already, and made a middle of the night emergency room trip for a dangerously high fever. That’s just the big stuff. He’s also dealing with all of the normal day to day things a little brother experiences…like big brothers sitting on your head, and squeezing you too tightly when they do try to be sweet to you. He doesn’t dwell on the fact that his life has been slightly unstable so far, or on the fact that his family may or may not be totally insane. He just lets it go and rolls with the punches.
It seems like Waylen’s life is a less complicated, and perhaps easier than mine. People always joke about how all babies do is eat, sleep, and poop. While that may seem true to a degree, especially in those first few months, we know that’s not all babies do. Babies also bring a tremendous amount of joy to our lives, give those lives a whole new meaning. Of course, as we grow up we learn bad habits, pick up negative talk and thoughts, and we lose our innocence. But maybe babies can be a reminder to worry less, focus on being happy and feeling joy every day, speak our truth, and to let the negative things go.