Tuesday, January 12, 2010

For the Love of Trucks

I've read recently that toddlers Jax's age will begin to develop empathy and compassion for people other than themselves. He will begin to feel sad when others are sad, and try to comfort others with a hug or kiss. This makes me feel optimistic about Baby's chances in the world, because hopefully Jax will feel bad after he hurls a book at her head. But one thing I learned today is that Jax already is a compassionate soul who looks out for others. In fact, if it comes to a choice between himself and his trucks, Jax is willing to lay down his life to protect them. I think he was a Transformer in another life.

You think I'm exaggerating? Well, let me tell you a quick story. Today I was vacuuming and Jax had an odd reaction. Usually, he is torn between severe intrigue (since a vacuum sounds like a truck) and terror when I vacuum. He vacillates between trying to inch forward and touch it to hiding behind furniture. But today, he had only one objective while I was vacuuming: save as many of his trucks as possible before they were eaten by the terrible, loud, vrooming thing.

As I started in one corner of the living room, he raced around the other end, grabbing as many trucks as possible and bringing them to the safety of the coffee table, out of harm's way. This would take an adult only moments, but Jax is new to the whole coordination thing, and he has a lot of trucks. I could see his mind whirling as he decided which he would save first and which would be left behind. It was kind of a women and children on the Titanic kind of thing. He identified the trucks of most significance (the blue and yellow Melissa & Doug truck was first, of course. Even before Blankie!), and then saved them according to their importance. It was really hilarious, except that he was taking it all so seriously. When I got near the coffee table, he started to cry, so I had to push it away to even further protect the sacred trucks.

The funniest part was when I was down to the last section of the living room, and there were a few small trucks there that hadn't made the cut: they had been left to perish. Jax watched in horror as the vacuum got closer and closer, and then, risking life and limb, he streaked out in front of the vacuum, sacrificing himself, to dive and quickly save the remaining trucks. What a hero! He is a friend to all four-wheeled vehicles everywhere.

Of course he got a reward after this life-threatening adventure. A growing boy with such a selfless attitude needs a little milk and cookies to keep his body strong. I think I may have a future superhero on my hands!

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