Thursday, February 7, 2013
We are almost there... We are one week shy of her first birthday. Her first 365 days of her life. Holy crapola! She has been on the outside for 358 days already and in those days, she has become a hard habit to break. She is absolutely perfect. She can make me belly laugh one second, want to devour her face with kisses the next and make me feel terrible for saying "NO" too loud causing her to cry.
The best part of my day is the same; each day of the work week. It begins by my walking through that door at daycare, seeing her face light up at the sight of me, and her furious crawl to the little plexi-glass door so I can swoop her into my arms. The instant that she is in my arms, she turns to her group of friends and starts waving, as if to say "Hey, this is my mommy, she's better than you are, so I'm going to go home with her now." We wave good-bye to the ladies that take care of her and walk out the door. I cover her with kisses the entire way to the car and she always acts aloof. She doesn't engage with me on the way to the car. Once we get out of the infant room, it's almost like she can't give kisses to her mother in front of the older kids. Seriously, Mom. Some days when we get to the car, she recognizes that she is going in her car seat and will start throwing a fit, back arched and head thrown back. Other days (these are more prevalent now), she will happily sit in her car seat while I hand her the little book that stays in the car about kitty cats. Our rides home are usually full of lots of babbling. We play the "you say, I say" game (where I try to repeat exactly what she says -- she really tries to get creative in her inflection then). Other days, she drops her book too soon and can't reach it, which leads to an epic meltdown in the backseat, as she doesn't like to be confined. But all is happy again when we get home and I rescue her from the evil seat.
Once we are home, we let out of the puppies. She loves watching them run around the yard and now "calls" after them with an "aaaapft" during a head nod when she sees them doing something that she approves of. She squeals when we climb the stairs where the dogs are waiting anxiously to get back in the house for their reward biscuits. I hand her the biscuit and bend at the knees so that she can hand the dogs their biscuits. Regardless of the dog, the first is always a smooth handoff -- the second is a struggle as she decides that she wants it for herself and gives out a cry of protest when I take it from her to give to the pup. Then begins the struggle of taking off our jackets. Hers always slides off easily along with her hat. Mine & my scarf are always the struggle. As I try to lower her to the ground, she throws her head back and stiffens her legs. So either I lay her on the ground and let her scream as I take off my hat, scarf & shoes. Or I keep her in my arms, juggling her from side to side, wiggling my arm furiously to get it to slide out of my winter jacket.
Then we begin our search for the kitty cats. She now meows at them and says her version of "kitty cat" when she sees them. Norm & Lucy won't run away -- Stella is always leery. Lucy will usually stay for the abuse, Norm lets us have one run down his back and then he's gone. We head upstairs where I change out of my work clothes and we take off her shoes. She protests some days when I try to put her down. Those are the days that I know she is super tired and I hurry to move on to our next step in our routine.
The final step in our daily routine involves her pacifier, her lamb, a blanket, and mama in a rocking chair. We sit in the rocking chair, get her lamb situated along with the blanket. She sits and looks at me for a moment and then her head lands on my chest with a kerplunk. She snuggles into her mama and just is. As I look down at her and check to see if she is asleep yet, most times, her eyes are wide open, blinking. I'll kiss the top of head multiple times as we sit there and rock. She relaxes and just listens to the rise and fall of my chest. Her little lamb is caressed between her fingers as she de-stresses from the day. And she snuggles even deeper into me, slowly drifting to sleep.
Then there are some days where she isn't quite ready. She'll lift her head at the slightest sound, usually the cats -- looking around alerted to the jingle of a cat toy or the distant barking of Munk seeing something outside the upstairs window. But those moments are always temporary. Everyday, always, she sits and looks at me for a moment and then her head lands on my chest with a kerplunk. It is the single best moment of my day. Always.