While I've been out of action, Daddy has been a wonderful help. Handing out extra snuggles here. Making dinner there. It's been such a relief, really. At least I think so. But you? Apparently not.
Big: "I not know what you're doing making in da kitchen, Daddy, but is smells horriful and I fink you should stop."
You certainly do not hold back with the honesty, do you Big? Ha!
Two Hundred and Ninety Two - 08.10.14
Big changes 'round these parts, little lady. Tonight, Daddy detached the cot from the side of our bed. While you (or I?) are not ready to have you sleep in your own room upstairs just yet, the time had come where you could do with a little more of your own space. You've been relocated... to our wardrobe. And before your face cringes with horror at the very thought, it's a walk-in-robe, and it's mighty big'un. So to our first night a few short metre apart, let's do this.
Two Hundred and Ninety Three - 09.10.14
Recently Mumma made a return to the books because there is really so much free time in the days that boredom was an issue. Except not even close. The truth is that it I felt a pull towards something, and I jumped. As a side note, I'd love you to remember that. Embracing the unknown with a positive, forward action is a wonderful thing.
But I digress.
As a result of said study, Daddy has been forced to fly the solo bedtime routine flag on occasion, last night being on of them. Oh my, how you adore your Daddy. And you certainly aren't afraid to let that little tidbit be known. An excellent example of this is our first exchange on this fine morning.
Big: "Where's Daddy?"
Mumma: "Good morning to you too, Big! Daddy's at work. How did you sleep?"
Big: "At work? But he's apposed to be here and you're apposed to be at work!"
Mumma: "He'll come back home tonight, okay?"
Big: "I know. Maybe you and Daddy can switch up for a widdle while? It might be your turn to work all da time, Mumma!"
What was that I said that other day about your honesty? Hmm...
Two Hundred and Ninety Four - 10.10.14
Le sigh. Not a promising way to start, is it sweets? Change is not always welcomed. I should know that by now. And we sure changed your little world, or at least your sleeping world, so who am I to take issue with you voicing your thoughts on the situation?
Night one was a piece of cake. A dream transition. But night two was nightmare-ish. In fact, it ended up with Daddy on the couch and you in bed with me... although perhaps it would be more accurate to say that I was in bed with you, given that your tiny body easily took over two thirds of the sleep space.
But it's not just the interrupted nights. No, no. It's the no more day naps too. Or maybe it's just no more sleep, period. But then your eyelids become heavy and your breathing slows and you sigh. I do too. Or maybe from me it's more of an introductory snore...
Two Hundred and Ninety Five - 11.10.14
If I've learned anything about motherhood it's the fact that there's always something new to learn. When there's a new skill that you're trying to master, I've learned to step back and let you figure things out for yourself. When nap times change, or disappear completely, I surrender and adapt. And when you regress... through the frustration, I listen and reflet and learn.
Regressions are one of those things. Part and parcel of this growing up caper. Most often not a pleasant part, but a part nonetheless. Rather than falling into the trap of disheartened wallowing, knowing that we'd have to walk the path already travelled once more, I chose to see something else. Impermanence. What exists today, may well not tomorrow. That misspoken word. That imaginary friend. Your desire for triangle shaped food. The best of times and the not-so great ones. They come and they go. And that, dear Big, makes the light shine brightly even on the darkest of days.
Two Hundred and Ninety Six - 12.10.14
Daddy likes to build things. And fix things. And just generally do stuff and keep busy. You tell me this often, and it is usually with a tale of how wonderful a helper you are. It's a lovely trait of yours, the desire to assist one, until it isn't. Like today.
We were all out in the backyard. You. Me. Daddy. Tiny. Daddy told me that he needed me to watch you both for ten minutes or so while he did something. No problem, right? Wrong.
I was busy removing strange berries in our garden from your sister's mouth. She was putting up quite the fight, you know. Clenched gums and locked jaw and all that jazz. I had my back to you for a moment, or a few short ones. And then you were no where to be seen. Gone. Until you weren't. I saw exactly where you were. On the very top wrung of the ladder, swinging that sweet leg of yours onto the first storey roof... "because I meed to help Daddy do his fixing."
I've said it before many times, and I'll say it once more. This little family of mine is blessed. Everyone and everything is fine and accounted for... except for my nerve. Oh my. How that has been shaken.
Two Hundred and Ninety Seven - 13.10.14
Mumma: "Where's Tiny?"
Palm to face or face to floor in one fell swoop. Body limp. Still. All in a swift and forceful action.
"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, for 2014."
Big: "Here you go, caterpiwar. You do your crawly hump, all da way to dese leabes. You can gobble dem up in your tummy, if you like?"
Tiny: As still as a statue, she waits. Concentration leaves high. Biding her time as it flutters on by. But not for long. Fingers at the ready. Hands too, in fact. Oh butterfly, how I want you to be mine...
A dear friend of mine suggested to me that they thought you were going to be my chatterbox. I must admit to shuddering at the very thought of this as a reality, particularly as I could have sworn that I already gave life to one chatty-happy babe coming up to three years ago now...
But this isn't about Big. It's about you. And you are certainly forward in reminding me, and everybody else too, for that matter, so. It's mostly babble with d's and g's and short vowel sounds, but it's ever present and darn adorable. You do manage to throw in some audible words in on occasion, like "dah-ddy" and "dah-da" (often), and "baba" (a little less often) and "mama" (as required - ha!) But do you want to know what really makes my heart sing? "Tah-tee". Your big sister's name, or your version of it. And every time I hear it? There goes my heart.
Two Hundred and Eighty Five - 01.10.14
Because we're talking about words, I feel it necessary to note the latest additions to my favourite things you, my sweet toddler, say:
Will there be vegetables eaten for dinner tonight? "I don't fink so!"
"My pwomise" you'll never throw your peas on the floor rather than taste them. "Eber!"
And what about pretending to gag to avoid swallowing carrot pieces? "I not do dat again eib-ver."
Two Hundred and Eighty Six - 02.10.14
Communication is, without a doubt, your strength. This is something I know we've established. But in saying this, I do mean communication in its fullest form. When words fail in their translation, your nonverbal cues shine with aplomb. And there ain't no misinterpretation of your pointer finger. It's the beacon for the direction you wish to travel on hip, the marker for food spied and desired, and the forceful poke to incite an uncovering of boob. At the hand on a tiny dictator, dear Pointer, you mean business, and you do business. That's right. You get stuff did. And if by chance that pointed finger of yours feels it necessary to invoke the assistance of the spoken word as a collaborative effort? Look out world. You've been warned.
Two Hundred and Eighty Seven- 03.10.14
Conversation with a toddler #8730:
Mumma: "Do you know where you live, Big?"
Big: "Oh yes I do, Mumma. I lib in Australia."
Mumma: "That's true. We do live in Australia. But do you know where in Australia you live?"
Big: "Dat's easy. I lib in a house in da [insert correct suburb name here] Dessert."
Two Hundred and Eighty Eight- 04.10.14
Today was quite dramatic. I spent the best part of the day in a hospital bed in the emergency department without you. I was dosed up on pain killers, and oh my, how I needed them, but this meant that your beloved boobie was out of action. Perhaps I should have been more organised and started a rainy day milk bank, but I wasn't. There was no stores of milk for consumption, and I could do little other than hope for the best that you'd cope on water and solid food.
And because you are you - so strong and resilient and because your Daddy is your Daddy - so wonderful and nurturing - you coped just fine. You shovelled food in your mouth like there was no tomorrow and he kept on serving until you stopped. You suckled on a sippy cup and he snuggled you to sleep. Knowing you were with he made me content. Well, as contented as you can be in a hospital bed, which, I might add, is pretty contented... or maybe that's the morphine talking?
Two Hundred and Eighty Nine - 05.10.14
Your instructions were simple. Be gentle. Be kind. Move slow. Mumma was fresh out of hospital, and still in a fair amount of pain. You took it upon yourself to look after me, being that you are medically trained, after all.
With your doctor kit at the ready, you prescribed cuddles as the primary source of pain relief. And if that didn't work?
Big: "We can try a bandaid next. Dey fix eberyfing!"
Two Hundred and Ninety - 06.10.14
Conversation with a toddler #65982:
Big: "Do you know about a caterpiwar, Mumma? Do you know what dey does?"
Mumma: "Oh, do tell me, please."
Big: "First dey eat up all da fings dey can find eberywhere. Den dey make a welly big cookie 'cause dere berry hungry and snuggle up to sleep wif it and when dey don't meed it 'cause dere nice and warmed up, dey be a beautiful butterfly!"