Finn’s first shoes

first stroll in shoes

Finn’s custom-made shoes — soft, recycled leather moccasins wide enough to accommodate his doughboy feet — arrived just in time for a three-day weekend. Our family walks immediately took on new meaning with six feet on the pavement instead of four. Finn was off  — step, step, step, step, step — just as if that’s how it’s always been.

It’s as if he’s a seasoned traveler after only three days. Even the soles of his shoes are already worn and dirty. Finn felt so independent that during a Sunday lunch down on South Beach, he insisted upon running around to explore Lincoln Road, wet as it was.

I cleaned off the bottoms of his shoes carefully and set them to dry in the sun, good as new. But there’s no going back, I know. Where’s my baby going? I’m running after him, but I only see this little boy in the distance…

finn walks away

the art of walking

A pair of custom made, fat-feet-shoes should arrive any minute, but Finn’s not standing idly by waiting around for them. Just a couple of weeks ago, I reported Finn’s first steps. These days, he’s not just walking…

He’s walking-chasing:

He’s walking-dancing-pointing:

He’s walking-dribbling:

And although we’ll never allow drinking and driving, we’re okay with the fact that he’s drinking-walking-WHAT?:

Finn’s getting quicker by the hour, it seems. He may be outrunning us soon enough…

Barefoot at eleven months

11mos

11mo

At month eleven, Finn is running, running, running toward one year. He may cross that line barefoot, however, as I have yet to buy him shoes. I think it’s a form of denial: they somehow signify “boy” in the same startling way that his two front teeth did.

Oh, where is my baby going? Just two nights ago, I cheered on his first four steps in a row; yesterday evening he stumble-raced toward me so quickly that I lost count. Eleven, I think. Tonight, he nearly crossed his nursery, stopped only by a toy that I, in my frantic attempt to simultaneously fulfill duties as videographer, cheerleader, and — well — astounded mom, was unable to swat out of the way fast enough:

Finn’s not just walking; he’s sprouting. Up rather than out for a change. His legs are merely fat rather than sumo-style, and these days everyone exclaims, “how his face is thinning out!” What? Thinning out? My child? Even his fat baby boobs are about gone.

The most significant change this month isn’t physical, however; it’s in his new ability to communicate. He can show us how much he understands with a simple tool: his finger, the powerful POINTER. I didn’t realize the effect a mere index finger could have until Keith asked Finn, “where’s Mommy?” — and Finn turned and pointed at me intently for the first time. I felt my face flush and eyes water. It was as if he had finally assigned me the official position that I’d been holding since I heard that first heartbeat in the doctor’s office so long ago.

I remember that heartbeat: it sounded so unbelievably fast — like he was running a race in the womb. Now he’s got more places to go. I guess I’d better get him some shoes.

Catching the good stuff

sideways at dinner

The last couple of weeks have been hard, so hard.

By my second week back at work, Finn figured out that when I walk away, I don’t always come right back. He’s beginning to understand and hate how time can move so slowly. After I leave, I can hear his cries from outside the door.

I’m beginning to understand and hate how time can move so quickly. Finn’s changes are so rapid these days that I cry about what I’m missing the second I’m outside the door.

This three-day weekend, though, I caught him doing four steps in a row:

And we had REAL conversations (despite my ill-designed attempt to get him to put his crab in a cup too SMALL for it! Sorry, little Man!):

He understands so much! If only I could tell him that this coming week, hanging heavily in front of us only a few hours away, will be a short one.