Lately, Z has been seriously clumsy.
Spill-y, trip-y, stumble-y.
She squirms around in her kitchen chair at every meal, often spilling her milk or dropping her silverware or falling onto the floor with a thunk.
She trips. A lot. It happens more when she's tired and it's been months and months since she last napped (RIP NAPTIME OH HOW I LOVED THEE) so I know she is often a little sleep deprived.
Her favorite thing to do when excited is flop around -HARD- on her knee caps. She might later mumble something about how her "legs feel a little ow-y".
CAN'T IMAGINE WHY, Z.
Do I ever find myself concerned? Yes. Do I sometimes feel compassion? Yes, often. But mostly, embarrassingly, I feel angry. Almost every time I hear the thunk/crash/OWIE, MOMMY, I FELL.
I have spent countless hours tending to this precious body of hers: nurturing and wiping and patting and bathing and rocking, not to mention GESTATING WITHIN MY BODILY CONFINES. I confess to feeling a bit resentful that she doesn't treat it with a little more care.
It's as if she doesn't know that I spent the first year of her life in abject terror that something might one day hurt her. Does she not care that I wept big, messy, self-admonishing tears when she, as a new walker, fell and hit her head at the split second I wavered from my never-ending head-bonk monitoring? Doesn't she remember me sobbing for a ridiculously long time when I cut her teeny, tiny perfect fingertip with those blasted baby-nail Scissors of Doom? (Not to mention....)
Where is the gratitude for the hours I've obsessed about the many, many ways she might possibly injure herself and how I could prevent it? (Hint: I'm convinced excessive and imaginative worrying has protective powers.) Where is the recognition for the countless times I averted sharp pointy edges and topple-y changing tables and RAVENOUS RABID WOLVES on her behalf?
(No, she doesn't understand these things. No, she won't appreciate my efforts one bit, at least not until she, maybe, possibly, has kids of her own.)
I know some of this carelessness is an attention getting tactic. E is on the move, sitting up, pulling up, and, of course, bonking her head. It makes sense that Z would regress a bit and need a little care over her own head bonking.
While I am hopeful she'll outgrow this particular floppy, spazzy, careless phase, I realize that it is doomed to be repeated, in many different ways and forms over the next -oh- 48 years. Some if it is just plain old risk-taking. And I know life is about risks. Only those who risk are free BLAH BLAH BLAH.
I want her to take risks. I understand her developmental need to push the boundaries, to literally ram her little body into the confines and structures of her life. I know it is our job as parents to focus our worries on the things that are truly dangerous and ignore the rest. I don't want to hold her back or be cemented in her childhood memories as the fret-er in the corner asking her to Be CAREFUL SWEETIE, JEEEEEZ!
I just wish there weren't so many bruises involved.
(We hope to fly out to Arizona tomorrow, before the next big snow storm. Fingers crossed! Hopefully my next post will be full of saguaro cacti and wide open skies!)