I remember when Luke was first born, Tony and I started reading "Bringing Up Boys" together -- although my sleepless nights (and days) quickly put an end to that...
Anyway, one of the things that stuck in my mind was the comment that somewhere around age 3 or so (okay, IF I remember the age right....remember, I had sleepless days and nights), boys will all of a sudden stop being lovable to Mom and she becomes almost like the enemy to them -- they want to imitate only what Dad says and does. It was not a day I was looking forward to, but I was glad I was forwarned so it wouldn't hurt so bad when it happened.
Well, Luke LOVES to imitate Daddy and we'll often both crack up hearing the echo of Tony's words coming from his little mouth, but I am pleased to say that so far, his affection for his Mama has not diminished one bit. I honestly cannot begin to tell you how often during the day (and night, if he wakes up in the middle of the night and needs help going downstairs, etc.) he'll say, "Mama. I love you. Lots and lots. That's all." It's at least a dozen times or several dozen, depending on the day. We often get into playful arguments about who loves the other more. He gets up from the supper table to whisper "I love you" in my ear. He'll be racing around the house and all of a sudden stop and tell me, "Mama, I love you!" before speeding on his way again. He'll be singing at the top of his lungs and take a deep breath to say "I love you, Mama!" before continuing his song. I asked him once, "Luke, what is love?" And he told me "Kindness, Mama. And doing good things. And kisses. Mama, I love you!"
Susi, on the other hand, will also tell me "I still love you, Mama!" but it's usually said right after she deliberately disobeys me. My response is to let her know how much I love her which is why I am going to discipline her!
And yes, Tony tells me the same thing several times a day, too (but without the "mama" attached!).