Moments. My heart sings for them. They are the reason I am a photographer. I want to capture precious moments and hold them close to my heart the way a crow hoards shiny treasures.
Sometimes though, the moment is too precious and perfect to interrupt with a camera. Take two nights ago, for example. I had sneaked our little one into our bed for some late-night, while-she-sleeps cuddling, but didn't want to take her back to her crib. It was cold that night, and our house was cold. Our room was cold. Her room was cold. No way was I going to wrench her from her warm little hovel between us in the big bed. No sirre.
Our little one can't be a co-sleeper. Believe me, opinions and professionals and readings and advice be darned, I've tried. She is just too wiggly, too floppy, and wakes way too often in our bed. And honestly, it's really that I'm just way too light a sleeper. But for some reason, I thought I would try. I basically stayed awake for the better part of an hour or so while she slept but alternately kicked me in the face, clutched my hair and whacked me upside the head. In her sleep.
Finally, she wiggled and flopped so much that I knew she was waking. She sat up, dazed-like, her two fingers in her mouth and looked back and back forth, back and forth, then up and down, then back and forth again. My head half-buried in my pillow, I watched her out of the corner of my eye. I could tell that she was still partly asleep and by the barest bit of light on her face, I could tell that she wasn't sure if she was dreaming. So I moved a bit to let her see my face. I expected her to realize she was awake and cry. Instead, she caught my eye. Then, out popped the fingers and, making no sound, she broke in the widest grin, then threw her little face on my pillow and gave me a giant kiss.
I swooned. And laughed. And then she kissed me again.
My life is filled now with moments like these. Like tonight, when both of us were such a mess after dinner that I just pulled her into the shower with me and she clutched me like a baby monkey with her cheek against my shoulder and hummed her little happy song while she enjoyed the warm water on her skin.
Or earlier today, when I yelled at her for doing something she's not supposed to do (which has only happened a couple of times in her life) and she was so taken aback that, after just staring at me, she yelled back and threw herself dramatically forward onto her toys and just laid there like her feelings were super hurt. Except for only two seconds.
Or tonight, when she actually blew her first bubbles and was just about as pleased as pie with herself. She's been trying to blow those darn bubbles for months! I squealed so loudly you would have thought she just got a perfect score on the SAT or something.
Or yesterday, when I pulled out her books and she rummaged through them until she saw her Little Grover potty book and squealed and her hands went wild trying to grab it. Then she picked it up and carried it right to Daddy to have him read it to her. Why she adores that book so much, I'll never know, but it's her favorite, second only to a book we call "The Mama Book." I can't even think of the real name, but it's a book of mama and baby animals and she loves to make the sound for each animal as we turn the pages. She won't take any other book before going to bed.
I just adore every new stage with this little girl. Everything is so joyful, so exciting to her. She walks so self-assuredly now, going exactly where she pleases with purpose. I love that I can say, "Go give your baby a bite of banana," and she'll walk right over and do it while saying, "Bada!" (Her word for banana.) This morning she was tickled pink because the cat chased a toy under the couch and only her feet were sticking out. Sweet Pea looked over at me, laughing, then pointed to the cat and said, "'tuck? 'tuck?" (Her word for stuck.)
She'll kiss anything, this girl. She loves to blow kisses, although she usually prefers to kiss her hand then smoosh that self-same hand against someone's mouth. I guess she wants to make sure her kiss isn't lost in the wind.
A moment of another first. She saw her first snow of the year on Monday, and she was pretty awestruck.
|Kissing her reflection.|