That Other Child

So Little bit is not my only child. I have another little boy. He’s two. He’s so different and so alike. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to call him. He’s my little bit, but they both are. And how confusing would it be if I referred to both of them by the same name? Maybe I’ll just call him D.

So D. You know what they say; it’s not uncommon to have two gifted children in the same family, but it doesn’t always shake out that way. Is he? I don’t know. He’s two. He doesn’t know ALL of his letters. I know he can count to 20. I don’t know much else. You see, D is not showy. He doesn’t like to show you what he knows. Sometimes, I’ll trick him before he catches on and I’ll get a glimpse, but it doesn’t happen often. He’s a quick thinker and will normally give me this, “I know what you’re up to” smile before giving me the wrong answer and smiling bigger. So I don’t know. And I really don’t care. He’s two. It doesn’t matter. Yes, my eyes are open to the possibility, but I’m not going to walk around quizzing the kid trying to figure out where is is intellectually.

Here’s what I do know about D. He’s my observer. He’s always been my observer. If you’ve ever seen Fringe, you know there are these people that appear and they simply watch. They’re observers. And that’s where we got the term. He’s been watching with intent since he was born. Always very alert, always keenly interested. Always thinking it through. You could see his little mind taking it all in and processing it.

He’s very in tune to things around him. He’s always (since he was a baby) had a knack for reading emotion. He’ll tell you when music is happy or sad or just plain wrong. He’ll ask what’s wrong when your tone of voice changes. He’s a mood barometer. For real. He tells you when he’s sad or happy or mad. He understands facial expressions and what they mean. He reads a person like a book. He’s really good at it.

His child care person has asked me if I have suggestions for teaching him. Or including him. She says he makes connections the others don’t and she wants to be able to meet his needs, but she’s not trained in gifted teaching. I asked, “Are you saying you think he’s smart?” “Oh yes,” she says. So I don’t know.

So maybe he’s not doing all the things I look for and I find myself asking, “that’s normal, right” more often than most because my perception of normal development isn’t quite right, but he’s got his own set of something special. He’s got his own set of strengths that little bit doesn’t have. He’s unique and beautiful and precious and I adore him.

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