The first rule of blogging is never blog at 4 in the morning. But the little man woke me up and made me think about the fractal nature of enjoyment and then the fractal nature of humanity, and eventually the overwhelming sadness of life and the need to let go (all the time). I've got this habit of talking him to sleep - I think he gets board and drops off while I hold him talking inanely in his ear (though I do try and get him lying down before he's asleep). I realised, with a pang of sadness just now that there will come a time, and not too far off, in which he will be too big to hold in my arms. I already miss the time when I took a shower with him one evening and he dosed off so totally peacefully cradled in my arms with the warm water falling over his little body. One joy of this positing is his little cheek which glows so softly in the semi moon light of his bedroom, with his tiny eye shut, just a flash of dark eyelashes. I digress.
This constant growth and his incessant desire for it is wonderful to observe but yet almost heart wrenchingly sad. I realise now all the little things mum said over the years, about how time flies, and how precious it all is (actually these don't capture quite what I'm referring to - it is a more intangible empathy I have for her experience of my growth which at the same time makes her proud of me and somehow sad for the loss of the little boy I once was. This raw emotion is almost too much and typically is the leading cause of me slipping into tears as I lay his tiny frame down, kiss him one last time and leave him sleeping. Apparently I'm still in a bracket - ) - there, that's better. The one consolation I have is that if I leave him I can have some time for us, like it used to be.
One of mums greatest teachings to me is the knowledge that it's the little things that matter. This I feel has formed much of my world view, I think for the better. This came to mind as I was chatting him asleep just now explaining to him that he mustn't get bored and frustrated but instead look closely and discover the tiny joys that are hidden around the edge of something that otherwise seemed smooth. Like a Mandelbrot fractal - as you zoom in, on top of each blob is another tiny blob which itself has another blob and so on - as it is with life. Something that initially seemed old and boring has other uses waiting to be discover. Unopened books have whole hidden worlds waiting to be discovered, cardboard boxes can be cut up and made into new things and possibilities, each tiny flower-head can have a whole ecosystem thriving inside. Perhaps this is why I like macro photography and also why I am so looking forward to spring and showing the little guy the garden. Again I digress and loose my thread (sorry to you and future-me reading this if it makes little sense).
Perhaps my final word before I head back to bed (05:18 now) is that the crinkly edges of life itself are to me the most important and that having a child has introduced a whole new level of them as he grows and experiences life for himself. I get the opportunity to experience with him and see things afresh through his eyes. But I wonder how much I hope and want him to grow and appreciate these things like I do. Perhaps he won't. He might be totally unsentimental and think I'm an annoying old man for wanting him to slow and appreciate life rather than rushing to grow up. Perhaps this is inevitable (although I think I grasped the idea quite early on that I didn't want to rush life - perhaps too early). Perhaps all I can do it make the most of the opportunities he grants me and appreciate the time for myself.
Like I said at the outset, never blog late at night.