wings and things

Love story 114 – ‘Andony’

on November 8, 2012

As a two-year-old, Ming gave much more of his affection to me than he did to Anthony. So, for awhile it seemed like I was the privileged parent. Sometimes I even worried (although somewhat smugly!) that Anthony might become jealous of the multiple kisses I received from Ming, compared to his own daily ration of one, maybe two.

But it wasn’t Anthony who became jealous; it was me! Why? Because, as Ming approached the age of three and began to acquire more and more words, I remained fixed in his vocabulary as ‘Mummy,’ whereas ‘Daddy’ became ‘Andony’.

My envy was made worse by Ming’s clear reasoning when I told him, rather shyly, that he could call me ‘Julie’ if he wanted to.

“But you’re just Mummy, Mummy – NOT Julie,” he said very definitely. He looked at me quizzically, obviously wondering if I understood or not.

“So how come you call Daddy ‘Anthony’?” I asked, hesitantly.

“Coz Andony is my bestest fren,” Ming said. Again, the slightly ironic frown.

I’m ashamed to say that my secret jealousy of the mateship between Anthony and Ming worsened over the ensuing weeks. Then, just as suddenly, it dissipated when one evening the brightness of their relationship clarified itself and I understood.

Ming was sitting on Anthony’s knee, and they were watching cartoons. I joined them, sitting across the room, and, out of the corner of my eye, I saw Ming deposit a series of soft kisses onto Anthony’s cheeks, then stroke his head with delicate, though bongo-style, pats.

It had been ages (a couple of days, I think!) since Ming had given me that sort of affection and I felt a mixture of yearning and bright, fluorescent, green envy.

I turned and caught Anthony’s eye. Ming saw the look and, perhaps thinking that I, too, wanted some attention, he tumbled off Anthony’s lap and toddled over to me. Well, it’s about time, I thought to myself.

“Mummy,” he whispered, climbing onto my knee, “I can ownee give you one kiss.”

“Why is that?” I exclaimed – a bit too forcefully perhaps.

“Because!” Ming said, alarmed at my tone but still with that wise-owl look on his face, “Andony is my bewful, bewful son.”

He kissed me benevolently once on the cheek, then hopped down and toddled back to Anthony’s lap, calling back to me over his shoulder, “You’ll be awight, Mummy, you’re a vewy big girl now.”

The day Ming was born

The three of us

The thing is that Ming has no recollection of these days. He only vaguely remembers running from one side of the room pictured above and flying into Anthony’s lap – constantly! He now calls Anthony ‘Dad’. He was glad not be home this morning for the excursion event.

For awhile I wrestled with myself about whether to force Ming to come with me to visit Ants more often but, as a friend recently pointed out to me, not many 18-year-olds want to spend time with their parents anyway so it’s not such a big deal. So I don’t push Ming anymore and I certainly don’t make him feel guilty about his disengagement from Anthony, and, fortunately, Anthony is content to see Ming occasionally or else speak on the phone.

So the ‘Andony’ days are well and truly over and that is okay because it has to be okay.

30 responses to “Love story 114 – ‘Andony’

  1. cobbies69 says:

    You are making a lovely diary and remembrance book Jules, love your story..

  2. FringeGirl says:

    Such beautiful memories.

  3. I remember when my boys “discovered” how much fun there dad was, and I admit to a little jealousy–but I got over it–your Ming sounds so sweet at two–at eighteen they are no longer sweet, but that will come back

  4. Gardengirl says:

    You have such beautiful memories. I hope you put them all together into a book someday. It would make a wonderful gift for Ming.

  5. Gardengirl says:

    You have such beautiful memories. I hope you put them together in a book someday. It would make a wonderful gift for Ming.

  6. bulldogsturf says:

    I just love this story Julie… you need to put them all together in a book

  7. You’re friend is right. 18 year olds aren’t thinking much about family – although they do love them. It mainly happens with the boys. My brother still acts that way sometimes but we all know he loves us – and he his 28!

  8. Such sweet memories of soft affectionate kisses and the wisdom of a child…

  9. Louise G. says:

    I love how you weave your memories into truth’s you’ve learned along the way — and what you’re learning today.

    There is such delicate beauty in each memory and seeing them in revealed in your words is like witnessing a pair of exquisite butterfly wings unfolding.

  10. viveka says:

    Your memories stories are so beautiful written … just love to read them. The logic in Ming’s thinking and saying. The simpleness is so beautiful transferred by you. So funny how kids in that adorable age can pick up words and phrases – and they always say them in the right moment too.
    I still think Ming has problems with how to deal with Ant’s situation and illness – and I think it will take a while. Ming is still a very young man and for him are uncomfortable still and I think it scares him too.

  11. Judith Post says:

    You’ve already poured the foundation and the two of you have created a wonderful son. He knows that, and all the love is what formed him. Kids need to move on. Ming’s doing a great job of it, and you’re doing a great job of letting him.

  12. sbcallahan says:

    as already stated things would be different regardless so those days are simply changed as they are meant to be.

    you will both treasure this to look back on.

  13. adinparadise says:

    Beautiful photos and memories, Julie.

  14. Ming will love to read these stories one day and be surprised and touched by your memories. You have a beautiful family.

  15. Oh how I love these posts, isn’t it amazing how the little ones think………….

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