Many momentous achievements occur within four years. In four years the President of the United States fulfills his first term as leader of this nation. In four years most college graduates will receive their diploma of baccalaureate in their desired field of study. In four years Cody has achieved status of fourth level of life. I don’t know about you, but I remember little of level four, much of level six (it was awesome!), level fourteen, and a few smatterings in between until my current level.
Cody has mastered the levels before the fourth with wild tenacity. He is keeps Rory accountable to the badge of fairness (and she him). Combat training is recognized and defining in skill (much to my chagrin with yet again, his sister). Communication strategies and messages from Command Center are probably his biggest challenge currently, but we are hopeful there will be an alliance between his vision and mine.
The mess hall routine is solid at breakfast time, decent at lunch, and gaining improvement at dinner; often attempting a coup in the vegetable category resulting instead in a poor gerrymandering gone stale by the 26th hour (true story). But like any higher power, we stand our ground to his unstable ideas and try our best to redirect to a better course. His array of studies in math, letters, bike riding, and sibling partnerships are gaining strength every day. He likes codes and combinations, especially if they unlock programmed doors like that of our own and his grandparents on both sides. He recites Bible verses with beautiful verve. I especially like when he recites 2 Timothy 1, big words coming from such a small voice give me great joy!
Speed is his language – he runs with focus outpacing both his siblings in a short sprint. He guides hedgehogs and other colorful creatures through thrilling digital games, gathering coins and rings to his delight. He feeds gorillas and elephants with numbers, helping zoo keepers count their inventory to success. He sings along, encouraging all he meets with a can-do spirit.
Cody can buckle his own seat belt, put his shoes on the right feet (you have no idea the achievement this badge represents in our family), gives the best hugs, and asks the deepest questions:
- “Why is a lot of food disgusting? No, I did not spit that on the floor. I actually spit it on the bench.”
- “How do people get dead? Not like go to Heaven, but like the process of dying. What turns off?”
- “That toy is ginormous! Seriously, its big. Like, I’m not kidding. Do you think its the biggest ever made in a factory? Or was it made with wishes?”
- “How do you make sausages? It’s a protein right? So could you stuff steak in it? Could it be like as long as the car? ‘Cause I was finking, that’d be awesome!”
- “How much sugar is too much? Bread is a grain, beef is a protein, but I fink…I really fink that candy has vitamins (shrugs shoulders), so it’s a good decision (stares dead pan and then laughs).”
He also continues to campaign for things he holds dear:
(grabs my face) “I don’t fink Daddy is married to you anymore.” (holds my face harder as I turn my cheek), “Stay still. I need to kiss you on the wips, seriously, on-da-wips!”
“Why?” I ask between squished cheeks in his palms.
“Because I need to marry you. We will oust Daddy. I am needing to accompwish this…before bed. Quick. Stay still.”
(His determination is unavoidable. I relent, lips meet. He jumps off the bed running to the other room)
“Hahahah! I did it Dad! I married her! You Are OUT!”
“RORY! GUARD the iPad. Guard it… I need to get a peppermint pattie. Maybe two…”
(me from the other room) “No, one.”
“Two is enough! It’s a great idea.They are at 5%. So that means you have to eat six of them. It will be my last. ”
“But we just eat one a day during Christmas advent,” I explain, “Plus, I know it won’t be your last. Please don’t lie and fabricate the situation to your liking. You know the rules. I can get rid of the peppermint patties if this is becoming a struggle.”
“No, I’m not fabwicating. Wying isn’t good for the soul. Fwankly, it is a two-for-one-day today. I have to get it or I will…I will…I will even… well I haven’t had any gummy yummy worms. How about we trade?”
“No. That’s enough sugar. Its only 9:30 in the morning.”
“That’s irr…irrelevant. Ugh. I want to have something!”
“Yep, you had a peppermint pattie,” I encourage.
“Ugh! Fine, fine. Eight. That’s my final offer. Deal?”
(Holding my face in his hands, stares with ultimate focus into my eyes)
“No,” I say.
(Walks off deflated, turns on his toes and comes back…)
“Got it. Two. Deal. You are the best mom, ever. I wuv you so much!”
(I stare skeptically at where this is going)
“So I was finking, three would be good. One for me, Ryder, and Rory. I’ll hold them.”
“In your mouth?” I ask with curiosity.
“Exactly! How did you know?”
(We stare at each other. Muscles tensing.)
“Yes, ma’am. Two. Got it.”
We wouldn’t trade Cody for a bag of sugar, or five, or eleven…well, maybe on the two-for-one days… just kidding. He is our spunky comrade, our out of the box thinker. Never is a day dull living with Cody. We might go to bed exhausted, our heads spinning from the mind games, but we are ever stronger by his steadfast training. My future career as a politician will benefit from these mental exercises (at least that’s what I keep telling myself). I look forward to many more levels achieved Cody-man. Happy Birthday “Code”! We love you so very much!