"can make a butter samwich and eat it?"
The first time he asked me if he could do this we were going on a picnic. When I am trying to herd my children out the door for an event like this, I generally speak to all of them at once. So this day I said,
"Everyone make yourself a sandwich, put it in a baggy, then put it in your lunchbox so we can go have a picnic.
My third child, who is 4, had never made himself a sandwich before. I was running around like a crazy person filling water bottles with ice water, digging around for granola bars, and resurrecting lunch boxes that had been getting buried in the pantry since school had let out for summer. I suppose while I was doing this he was thinking,
"Hmmmm.... I am not very good at spreading things on bread like my brothers are. Is there a very soft substance that I also like to eat on bread? Then I can be big like them..."
I came back from crazy-finding-gathering-long-lost-lunch-paraphernalia land to Jackson proudly showing me a sandwich in a baggy inside his lunch box. He said,
"I made a butter sandwich!"
I said, "A peanut butter sandwich?"
He responded, "No, a butter sandwich."
He has made himself a butter sandwich nearly every day since then.
But you should see him. His chubby cheeks lift towards the counter as he searches for creamy yellow butter from the butter dish with his knife. He concentrates as he determines that he is going to try to cut it in half by himself this time. The way he carefully brings his plate to the table and then the way he eats all but the crust and then declares, "I can cut all my samwiches in half by myself for you now mom. When you make grilled cheese, I will cut it for you." He gets this look in his eyes as he thinks about these glorious future moments of independence.
Dear little one. I hope I can give you more chances to feel independent in your life. I love the look you get in your eyes as you work for something you want. You inspire me to help all three of my boys have that look every day of their lives. You are so precious to me. I am so glad I am your mom.