At Scarlet’s 15-month doctor’s appointment, I was astonished at how much “babyness” she still had. Her curls were short and wild. She clung to me, naked except for a diaper, and I held her and rocked her after her vaccinations. She had big, baby cheeks, except that the right cheek that got injured was more sunken in then, as the compressed tissue still had a lot of growing to do. She could walk and even talk a bit, but she was still over 50% baby.
Now on the eve of her 18-month birthday, I think about how much of her babyness has slipped away. And yet there is still so much babyness to behold and cherish. I actually think that the last traces of babyness stick around for several years. I think you can even see them on a 10-year-old at times. I think you can even see just shadows of them on a sleeping grown adult on very, very rare times. Again, these are just shadows of the past that show you what this adult must have been like decades ago. I imagine these shadows live on to old age.
This week we filled a cardboard box with baby toys – rattles and jingly stuffed animals and mirrors and all sorts of baby thing-a-majiggys. She just has too many toddler toys now. I’m not sure if we’ll donate these toys, give them to new parents we know, or keep them for our next baby, if we have one. (which I think we will – I just want a puppy more right now)
Oh, how I miss my baby. And oh how I look forward to life with my girl.
This, darling, is who you are at 18 months. At one and a half.
You are a deliriously happy soul. Deliriously happy. You are laughter and light and magic.
You are a dreamer…
…And a lover.
You are generous with love and affection. You have great manners. You say “Please” and “Thank You” appropriately and daily. You spend a lot of time hugging, kissing and blowing kisses.
You’ve got the whole world in your hands, and you know it.
You are secure and confident in this world. You know 100% how loved you are. You are unaware of the dangers in this world and I love that about you. One day you’ll know some sad truths about this imperfect world but I believe you’ll always rise above it. You are so strong.
You are so curious about the world. There is always something tucked securely in your hands, whether it be a doll, a cup, a book, a pen, a diaper, whatever. You’re never empty handed and you’re always exploring your world.
And yet, you are so careful and gentle. How can you be a toddler and be so careful and gentle? You never break things. You sit next to valuable, fragile statues. You run through houses full of mugs, bowls and plates at your level. You run past fireplaces and not through them. You are only 18 months old and there is not a careless bone in your body. I love that.
You’re a force of nature and you eat (lick) up life and love.
You are so funny. You have better comic timing than most of the actors and writers of Saturday Night Live. YOU should be on stage. You heal people with your magic and wit.
You are my girl. You learned to crawl and then you learned to walk. And then you learned to walk away from me. And then you learned to run away from me. But you always come back.