I'm a few days late again, I hope you'll forgive me. It seems now I hate to do anything but squeeze very moment with you, and even writing this letter takes a back seat to our games of "head, shoulders, knees and toes" and peek-a-boo. So I'm up now, at 5 am to get this in - I truly wouldn't have it any other way.
You've been sick this last month. It's a cold it seems you just can't shake, but true to form, you have been smiling through your tears. It seems nothing can damped your spirit. I feel like it's my responsibility to to make sure that's always the case. I know the world will bring us a lot harder things to deal with than a cough and runny nose, but I'm determined to conquer them all. I think, together, you and I can do just about anything, honestly.
And that's the feeling I have now. That it's you and I. You're such your own person now. You're a spitfire, that's for sure. And as weird as it is to say out loud, one of my best friends. I feel like we've just met (and, well we have) and yet, you've always been here. I forget what it was like before you. Before I woke every morning with a smile. Before I laughed every night while dancing. There were days before all this, I know it, but they've slipped away. Their stresses and worries and joys all fade in comparison to what life is like now.
It's just 6 months, but it might as well have been a lifetime.
Every thing means more to me now. Every decision I make carries more weight, every smile contains more joy. My whole world is better because of you. It's harder too, of course. I'm exhausted all the time now. I run behind the lists of "do's" like a dog behind a speeding car. But it's okay. It's all okay.
You can say "mama." You giggle sometimes for no reason. You have this smile, when you're really happy where you open your mouth so big it looks like your about to laugh, but the sound is just too much. Your eyes crinkle up to little half-moons when you're pleased with something. You sing with me as we walk home down the street... you give me so many reasons to keep going. To be happy myself.
And as much as I hate that you're in daycare, you seem to be enjoying it. I still cry every day I leave you, walking to the train. But they care well for you there and you're making friends. Of course you're making friends. Miss Rochelle tells all about what you do every day when I arrive after work, and it's been fun to hear about you from someone else. It's like this golden slice of perspective. She confirms every thing we already know - that you're empathetic. You hate to hear the other babies cry. You're sociable, you won't go into the "quiet room" to sleep, but have to be out where you can see people. And you're anxious to be "bigger." You love going into the toddler room to watch them, to play with them.
I know you can see what's coming, and you can't wait to get there. I see the sparkle in your eyes when you manage a step or two, or when you make some little sound I interpret correctly. You're so ready to grow bigger, be stronger - be older, somehow.
And as much as I love watching you conquer every little step. As much as I love seeing you strive constantly for what you want (oh, how I love your determination!) I am still looking for the "pause" button every once in a while. These days with you, this time you and I share, are only getting shorter. They're only getting more rare. I know the days to come will only get better, of course. But sometimes, when you're cuddled up in my arms talking to me in your sleep I think - "this. this is what heaven is. this is perfection." All my cares drop away, all the work not-yet-done, all the money not yet saved. It all goes away.
And there's just you and me and the afternoon. There's no where or when I'd rather be.
I love you, Sweetums. Your giant toothless smile, your already laid-back attitude. I love every single ounce of you.
Thank you, my darling daughter, for loving me.