The downhill slope

Dear E,

Today was officially the shortest day of the year. We were still snowed in from the Snowpocalpse of Aught Nine and we spent most of the day indoors as snow was still 18 inches high and the wind was howling something fierce.

It would have been a perfect day to curl up with a mug of tea and the Sunday Times (HAD IT EVER ARRIVED) but you were having none of that nonsense.

You are on the move.

You are suddenly camo-crawling and it is a both exhilarating and terrifying to me as your mother. You see, your big sister was content to be immobile for a long time and never really crawled; she finally did what we called the "monkey shuffle" around 10 months old and then pulled up and started cruising and that was the end of that.

You are charting your own course here. And we feel woefully unprepared.

In a room strewn with your safe baby toys, you make a beeline for tucked away power cords and hidden dog toys and, inexplicably, the cracks in the floor boards (where there might be some stray dog hair that you haven't yet tasted?).

And, OH YES, you're pretty much sitting up now too which makes you immensely proud of yourself. As well it should.
I love watching you explore your world with newfound independence and skill.

But today, when it was our darkest, shortest day, all I wanted to do was curl up and stay still and you wouldn't allow it. From the moment you woke up, you were raring to go, with a huge growling grin, immediately taking big fistfuls of my hair and trying to shove them down your throat. WELL HELLO TO YOU TOO!

Every nursing session was a struggle. Your legs had to thrash around while you guzzled down your breakfast, your fingers had to pinch randomly for loose flesh (of which there is plenty, AHEM). When you were done, you were done, arching your back, trying to dive for the floor: ENOUGH WOMAN! I'M DONE WITH YOU.

When all I craved was quiet stillness, you couldn't bare to be still.

Today we begin the slow downhill slope toward summer. Toward long, warm days. Toward sunshine and bathing suits and flip flops.

We still have a long winter ahead and you are still a little baby.

But I know that we are on the crest looking at the downhill slope.

Toward summer.

Away from your babyhood.

And all I want to do is curl up and be still.


your Clueless But Hopeful Mama


parkingathome said...

My god, that fourth picture...she looks like an adult in it. She's so strikingly beautiful

Hillary said...

Those cheeks! Those rolls! Those eyes! That tenacious monkey shirt!
I know the kind of day you're describing, but how cool is it to watch these little people grow?

Michelle said...

I don't think I've seen a happier child. I love the pictures with her wide open grin.

Marie Green said...

Oh man! Summer means baby growing! Now I'll not look at summer the same. Well, at least I don't have any "babies" per se...

The snow is beautiful. Also? We too have that green IKEA clothes hamper...

Sarah said...

What a munchable, buttered dinner roll of a baby! Chomp.
But yeah, the crawling stage was never my personal favorite either. Once they're not licking the floor you can be SO much more relaxed about sweeping and vacuuming, for one thing!

Good Enough Mom said...

I can totally see her feistiness in those photos! Here comes the fun...

And now, will you stop making me cry already???

Whimsy said...

So beautiful, as always.

And those PICTURES! What a gorgeous girl.

Kathi McCracken Dente said...

Wow! I am impressed with how clean your floors are. No room in my house is that clean. Between M's toys and a vacuum that is collecting dust, poor T has one little corner where she can play. And she already is begging for more real estate.

Your writing is getting more and more beautiful. This was very well said. I too would like to be still, especially this time of year.

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