It is interesting to observe how certain events that Melissa and I consider rather indistinguishable from everyday life can be significant experiences for Everett. For example, he recently started talking about Freddy the Frog. I didn’t understand who he was or how he was connected to our life, but now I do. Freddy is a frog who travels by backpack to the homes of all the children in Everett’s class. His travels are documented in a journal along with photos, which leads to lots of anticipation for the kids who are waiting to host Freddy, and gives each of them a small sense of life outside of their own family. Last weekend Freddy was scheduled to be at our house, so when we picked up Everett from school on Thursday we were also given a backpack containing a panoply of frog-related items. Since then Everett has been showing Freddy all the interesting things in our house, such as the sunflowers that he recently planted in pots on the windowsill, and he is explaining to Freddy important facts such as “Zebras are at the zoo, but actually they live in Africa.” To give you a sense of Freddy’s importance: Everett has always slept with ducky, who was a gift from Mimi before she died (Everett was in utero at the time, but Mimi knew he was on the way). Recently Grover arrived, and ducky was put in the dresser drawer for a night while Grover was in the crib. Now that Freddy is here, both ducky and Grover are in the drawer. Freddy was a constant companion until we returned him on Monday morning.
Watching Everett with Freddy was interesting in many ways. We can only guess at the size of the universe that Everett is aware of, which we attempt to infer from his words and actions. It was fascinating to hear Everett explain the world to Freddy. At this moment Freddy occupies quite a large space and we feel confident that we will hear about him for some time to come. This prompted us to recount some our own formative experiences which were factually unremarkable but deeply memorable. So far the lasting consequence of Freddy’s visit is that we have been reading A LOT of Froggy books.

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