A Boy and His Baby

Caleb and I went to have dinner at one of my favorite OC places, Jalapenos.
 
In the small coin machines they have with little toys in clear plastic balls, was this teeny, tiny baby. I have no idea how he got it. I gave him zero cents for such things. But he came over, plastic ball with tiny toy in hand. "Look mommy!" "What is this? IS THIS A TINY BABY? WHAT IN THE WORLD?" Yes, his toy that he somehow conned another adult into getting for him, or that he somehow found in the slot of the machine, was an ittsy bitsy BABY. I mean, you can't even see it. It is so dang small. Why is there a machine, pull of tiny babies like that?! So weird. What happened to the bouncy balls and sticky hands of my youth? Or even small animals? What is with the naked, small rubber baby in fetal position?! I am still perplexed by this. I don't get it. 
 Either way, he loved that tiny baby. They hung out. 
 They also ate dinner together. Caleb, and strange tiny baby.
He brought that baby home with him. He lost the baby before bedtime, and was so distressed. He wept his big boy tears telling me, "I lost the baby, I lost it." He asked that we go look for the baby in the car. We did, and that baby wasn't there. But really, it is so small, of course we couldn't find it. And he couldn't go to bed with that thing. Not when he could easily swallow it. 
So, to his chagrin, he went to bed without finding that little baby. Later I found it in the hallway. It was right there the whole time. 

What is striking to me about this story, is his care for this little toy. His desire to take care of this strange, tiny, baby. This isn't the first time he has been this way with toy babies. Starting with him being in the one year old room at school, he used to carry the baby dolls around and pretend to feed them and put them down for naps. I think it is a sweet and beautiful thing. Who said boys can't play with baby dolls? I think it enforces and teaches a lot of good things. And I think it is incredibly sweet and wonderful that he wants to care for these little things and make sure they are okay. It is an extension of the love and care that has been shown to him, and this is the way he is showing it in his play. It's about time I get him his own baby. One that he can't swallow. 

Cheers to the future caretakers of this world. May they grow with love and empathy for others, even the littlest of these.