Monterey Bay Aquarium
This past weekend, my family visited Monterey, CA. We strolled through its famous aquarium. My kids had a blast. They couldn't get enough of playing with the water. The creatures in the tanks were stunningly beautiful. Sitting back watching how my children were completely entertained and thoroughly enjoying themselves, I thought how great it is to be young and enchanted by everything around you. Their environment is still pure, not tainted or jaded. I watched multiple families cross my path as I sat on the bench with the stroller. My baby stops by to say hi and gives me a kiss every once in awhile as my two older children were pushing their fish and boat along the river path. I saw a father caressed his infant daughter as his wife was busily moving them along the crowd. Such protection from the father warms my heart. Then I looked at the Down Syndrome baby smiling in his arm. The parents were older and it seems like she was their only child. Initially, I thought how sad. But my sadness quickly dissipated as I continued to watch how protective the parents were of their child. That child may not have been given a normal amount of DNA, but she sure does have more love than a lot of children with the normal amount of DNA. They captured my attention as I watched them feed her with a bottle.
Then I heard a mom yelled at her tween daughter for being selfish. The mother said, "Oh great, you get to play here as the rest of the adults stand around and watch you idly." I turned to my husband who came to join me. He was surprised at the outburst as well. We didn't understand the harshness of her tone. Defeated, the girl left the Splash Zone for kids and fell in line with the other adults as she was the only child in the group. Sometimes adults just really don't understand.
Then my baby came back to hug and kiss. But this time, he hung around with me and my husband. We played with him, fed him some snacks and let him run around us. The crowd has died down. There were only a couple of other children and our two older ones playing with the water. Then it was time to go home. On the way home, my baby said his dolly (his sister's old doll) was hungry. I asked him to wait until we get home to feed the baby. He said that his baby was hungry now. Suddenly an eruption of laughter came from the back seat. My 2 y.o. baby boy decided to breastfeed his dolly. It was a sight to be seen. My daughter told him only girls with "boobies" can nurse. So he gave the doll to her and she nursed the doll for him. If only I had my camera right then and there...
My children are a funny bunch. I am surely going to miss them when they all grow up and move away for school or just adventure. They all say they don't want to leave me now. But I know when the time comes, they will be dashing out that door as quickly as possible. I would like my children to remember what fun they had growing up together. I wish the sibling bond never break but only strengthen with time. Right now they are 3 against 2 (my husband and I). They stick together like glue. They go against us as a team. It's maddening but sweet at the same time.