This is a long one. Because love will make you do funny things. Like stay up until 3 in the morning writing about your child. The child who was JUST a baby YESTERDAY and now, today, is more of a little girl.
She turned 15 months old today.
Just when I thought I couldn't love her more, each day I do.
I'm still often baffled why God chose ME to be her mom.
I feel privileged. I really do.
I feel privileged. I really do.
Don't get me wrong. There are days when I get exasperated and would rather not chase after a little runchkin who finds pleasure in repeatedly emptying my purse and the desk drawers and anything else she can get into.
Just today, she thought it would be neat to place a brand new roll of toliet paper into the toliet. After doing so, she proceeded to play with the mushy tissue.
There are times when I'm heading out the door, and I wish I didn't have to think twice about whether my shirt was "child-friendly," whether it could withstand having a dirty mouth and nose wiped on it numerous times. There are times when she wiggles and flips over while I'm changing her diaper, and I am tempted to throw my hands in the air and give up and just let her run naked. And there are times when I am so done with the disgruntled squeals she emits when I wipe off her face after a meal.
She's a finicky eater. Sometimes she gobbles down every single bite and most others she throws a perfectly good tasty meal onto the floor. She enjoys slamming her sippy cup of milk off her high chair tray and onto the floor and then whining a few minutes later because she's thirsty, and her milk is on the floor, and she's pissed off that she is unable to reach it.
Some days I feel like a waitress, a short-order cook. Some days it's not even lunchtime, and I've already lost count how many times I've gotten poop or snot on my hands. These are the moments that make me wonder why -- after 15 months of practice -- I'm not better at all of this mother stuff? Some days -- in rare moments of self-doubt and frustration -- I question why I have not yet mastered it all.
I remind myself that when I decided to have a baby, I did not sign up to be a saint nor did I sign up for a perfect angel.
But I also didn't sign up for so many other things.
Like the love. Oh my gosh, the love. She now gives hugs. Hugs! Like she wraps her arms around my neck and purposely squeezes. For so long, she wasn't a cuddler. And now, she crawls in and out of my lap just to be near me. I think she likes me. And that feels nice.
The laughter. Oh my. If I could listen to her laugh for the rest of my life, I would never have to hear another single sound. The giggles are ridiculously adorable. Tickle her tummy, and she'll bellow out a few. Dance with her, and she's nothing but happy. Smile at her, and she'll smile back, showing her six jagged little baby teeth. She's got a sense of humor, and she's funny.
The tender moments. Like when she puts her head on my shoulder and strokes the hair on the back of my head. Need I say more? Oh, this child has me hooked. Her little voice is the sweetest. I love hearing her jabber, never really knowing what she's saying, but she sure as heck sounds and looks like she does. She'll say dad-this and mom-that, and she'll throw out some random "ups" and "his" and maybe a few other words.
Two weeks ago, she took her first steps. Today she took 12. She wobbles like she is drunk, and it's pure adorableness, if I do say so myself. She knows she can crawl faster than she can walk, so crawling is still her primary mode of self-transportation. I want her to walk, but at the same time, I feel a little guilty for not wanting to rush it. I so love to listen to her little hands and feet slapping the floor as she races to whatever it is that she wants.
I am so in love. With her smiles and her laughter and the smell of her head and the touch of her cheek against mine. She is music to my ears, and I want her songs to last forever.