Well, it took a solid 18 months, but it finally happened. Ralph called me momma. He said it for the first time on Easter Sunday while we were playing in my parents' backyard-- a little sigh of a hi, mom. And then he plopped down on my lap like he'd been saying it for years. I replied with a hi, baby before even realizing what had happened, and then looked at my sister to ask if she had heard it, too. She had! And there was much rejoicing.
Since then he's been figuring out how to slowly include the word into everyday conversation. He sounded like a baby goat at first, very deliberately sounding out maa-maa with much concentration, and often a little finger pointed in my direction. Now that he knows what he's doing, he'll get creative with it, trying out ma-ma-ma-ma or mommymommymommymommy. It's wonderful and hilarious and really fulfilling to hear, even though the fact that it took so long for him to say it never bothered me all that much. I knew it would come. Only once did my impatience get the best of me, and I said to Ryan, "What if he can't find me? How will he call for me?" And then we both chuckled because we knew how ridiculous those questions were. Because, for starters, I am never very far away from this child. And he certainly doesn't need to be able to say momma to get my attention. One loud wail (the one that he's had 18 months to perfect) is enough to send me running to him. And that-- the fact that he hasn't needed to say it, because I am always right there, right by his side, ready to care for him-- makes me one happy momma indeed. A slightly hovering, annoying, helicopter mom? Yes, probably. But a happy one. Good enough for me.
But I mean seriously, Ralph, it's about time.
And now, in keeping with the theme, here are some pictures from Sunday. We went to our favorite beach after church, which, I guess, is turning out to be a Mother's Day tradition. (Except this time we didn't fight at all! Remember that?) The weather was gorgeous, so warm and still and slightly humid, and we spent the entire day outside. We planted some flowers, got tacos for supper, and the tree in our backyard bloomed little white blossoms. I was in heaven. Happy Mother's Day, dear ones.