The railing came off today…

Luna is almost halfway through her second post-uterus year, and she is making so much progress. I know being her mommy I am naturally bias, but I honestly feel like my little girl is a genius, or at least advanced for her age. At two weeks old we started putting rice cereal in her bottles at the suggestion of her pediatrician and some veteran mommies I’m friends with or related to. She did well with that, and started gaining the weight she needed. At four months, again at the pediatrician’s advice, we introduced her to stage one baby food. By six months, she was eating hand-shredded versions of whatever we ate for dinner. At seven months she was completely bottle-weaned, loving her sippy-cup. She went from crawling, to walking, to running, to scaling high heights this summer. And two days ago she structured her first complete sentence, “I want my mommy!” She is interested in drinking from regular cups now, but it’s less messy if we give her the sippy-cup, so when we go to restaurants I’ve been ordering a small ice-water in a cup with a lid and straw for her to enjoy. She loves drinking from straws. She eats exactly what I cook now without any separate or special preperation; she tries to help me clean her room or wipe down shelves with rags; and she’s even interested in books and colouring and carrying backpacks and dressing up. This afternoon she even figured out how to use a zipper. So tonight, during our evening playtime, I got out the Philips-head and removed the railing from her crib. Instant daybed. I sat there on the floor reading to her for the better part of an hour (Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich) while she climbed in and out and in and out and in and out of that bed. She clapped and I cheered every time she successfully made it into the bed. Then, as she started showing her tale-tell signs of sleepiness (eye-rubbing, whining, yawning, etc.), I kissed her goodnight, put a blanket over her, handed her her sippy-cup, walked out of her room and shut the door behind me. She immediately climbed out of bed and stood at her door pounding her tiny fists against the reconstituted wood and screaming with all the force her tiny lungs could muster. After a while, when she could tell I wasn’t giving in, I could hear her moving away from the door, still screaming, but with less enthusiasm. Now, as I sit here typing this, I am enjoying the familiar quiet that follows our successful bedtime ritual, only this time she is sleeping in her “big girl bed.” My little girl is growing up, and I am getting old. It seems like just yesterday I was so excited about my kindergarten parade or about winning that poetry contest in second grade or about Jesse, the HOTTEST guy in sixth grade, wanting to sign MY yearbook. My how time flies! Next thing I know it’ll be her first day of school, her first boyfriend, her first job, her first year of college. Then she’ll be calling me up one day to tell me all about what her children have accomplished. There goes my life; but it’s all worth it. This is life, and I’m living it. Kenny Chesney–Momma’s waiting to tuck her in,as she fumbles up those stairs. She smiles back at him dragging that teddy bear. Sleep tight, blue eyes and bouncin’ curls. He smiles…there goes my life. There goes my future, my everything. I love you, daddy good-night. There goes my life.

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