I'm absolutely loving parenting at the moment. Sammy is as cute as can be - making us laugh every single day with the things he says, the cute looks he gives. He's a joy. Honestly. It's all wonderful with Sam.
But it's Alexander who's blowing our minds right now. He's suddenly become even more of a sponge than before. He's on a learning bender, asking questions, researching answers with us, pushing himself harder and harder - and deciding what he wants to be when he grows up. He has decided, quite firmly that he wants to be an astronomer.
He did a school project last year (they were allowed to pick any subject for their final presentation) and he chose Saturn. He buried himself in learning about Saturn, and Galileo. He was fascinated.
This year, that interest has extended to learning everything he can about the universe - all of the planets, their moons, gas giants, black holes, stars, galaxies, scientists, constellations, whatever he can use. He's got posters of the Milky Way, our solar system, the Periodic Table. He's learning the speed of light, the different elements that go up into simple things (bearing in mind he's just turned 9).
I'm watching him and I'm in awe. I was always interested in space as a child (though not as much as I was interested in Reading, History and Biology) but I didn't really have that much opportunity to investigate it much further. We didn't have computers or internet back then, my parents had 4 mouths to feed on one very modest wage, so there weren't opportunities to visit planetariums or the like.
But there is so much more available to our children than there was for us. Any person who wishes, can research hours upon hours at a time on any subject they want. Visits to libraries and book stores bring home bounties of treasure for an enquiring mind, and just the littlest bit of encouragement, and something wonderful blossoms before us.
I love watching his amazement. He takes nothing for granted. He is in awe of the universe - the sheer immensity of it, the rules that govern it, the wonder of its beauty. It hasn't damaged this little man's faith in God, rather deepening it, certain that such wondrous things have intelligent design. His little prayers are so beautiful to hear, so innocent and grateful.
He's not single minded by any means. He is fairly well rounded (well, for a Spectrum kid, anyway). He's trying to master poetry (writing it, that is. Something I was never able to do), wants to write (He's just shifted his focus slightly from writing all fiction, to also trying to write a 'biography' of Galileo and a book 'for kids' on different planets and celestial wonders (what boy can resist stories about Black Holes and discovery of new stars?).
He despises math with a passion. I don't blame him. It certainly wasn't a subject I enjoyed. But when I told him that if he wanted to be a scientist, if he wanted to learn more about astronomy, he was going to have to have a great grip on math, he stopped complaining about having to do it. He still struggles - math isn't easy for him. But when just weeks ago Math homework was producing tantrums and frustration, now I hear a steely determination. He knows that if he wants to pursue his goals, his education is going to have to be rounded. I'm proud of him for that. We enjoy being able to
I've never enjoyed parenting more than I am now. I'm in awe of the boy, of his love of learning. I'm proud and honoured to be a part of it.