Had he not been identical in appearance, weight, speed, and strength to the Spencer I'd been with throughout the winter holidays, I would have sworn he was not the same child. He smiled, squealed--still running off from many who greeted him--but he did so with a skip in his run (he doesn't take many "steps") and a welcoming grin on his face. Spencer's countenance was inarguably unprecedented for a group event. I could easily write enough for a year of blog posts with my hypotheses for this bewildering phenomenon; but suffice it to say I think it has much to do with his parents' subtle differences in mood and expectation levels--differences that I would argue are not so subtle to their young child. Those of you who know us well know that we're both wound a bit tightly.
I don't hold that our every negative or ambivalent emotion is the cause of Spencer's every negative and ambivalent action. And, I'm in no way new to the idea that there exists some sort of correlation. These ideas are in no way an epiphany to me; but there was no ambivalence in the display of good will and excitement on this particular evening. Not from me, not from Jonathan, and not from Spencer.
And since y'all don't come here just to hear me play psychologist, see for yourself.
Later, Spencer discovered a wooden recorder that was left out of his Christmas booty because his Gigi didn't think he'd be able to use it. If you've ever seen Spencer anguished in the mire of frustration, you understand the importance of not setting him up for it on a holiday past his bedtime. However, although Spencer was able to blow into the recorder and make one high, woodwind note fill the air; he was much more interested in forcing me to play it. A failure at the piano for many, many years, I can still play the rendition of "Amazing Grace" taught to my entire fifth grade class in Music on the recorder. Spencer ate it up. He wouldn't let me quit. Really. I eventually had to switch to "Hot Cross Buns" just to make it less boring for me. My mom and sister were cracking up; and it's hard to laugh and play the recorder simultaneously. Spencer had no patience for my nonsense. He will make quite the conductor someday--or merciless dictator. We're all pulling for conductor.
While forcing me to play the recorder, he sashayed around the room. Again: expect the unexpected. In my naivete, I'd pictured him running through the house, blowing on the recorder as hard as he could. Glowing in his new found ability to add piercingly high sound waves to the already raucous atmosphere he enjoys creating. Wrong again.