I'm enjoying my newborn and I have to admit, I managed to get extra sleep today. But my mother's house is so quiet without my darling Eliza.
Even before C took her, I've been missing my girl like crazy. Missing the relationship we used to have that's now forever changed by the presence of this other person. I love my young daughter Elena, but I miss the things I used to do with Eliza. I can't do many things now because I'm still recovering from surgery. But things are not going to be what they were and I've never been one to like change.
Eliza is so proud of being a big sister and she seems to love the baby, but I feel like I spend the majority of most days reminding Eliza to be careful with the baby, with my boo boo, with my mother. I dump her off at day care next door every day, desperate to get home and have a nap. Because Elena refuses to sleep in her bassinet, she spends most nights in bed with me. Since Eliza hates to come upstairs and find the baby in bed with me, now when I hear Eliza run towards the steps in the morning, I dump Elena in the bassinet like a philandering boyfriend caught in a rest stop bathroom.
I am so jealous of all that C can do with Eliza at the moment: pick her up, carry her around, encourage her to jump into his arms, and spend an entire weekend showering her with undivided attention. When I called her tonight, she barely spoke to me she was having such a breathlessly fun time with her father. You bet I'm jealous even though I don't envy C at all. C plays with Eliza for hours--using dolls as puppets, hovering under umbrellas in Eliza's bedroom pretending there's a rainstorm. He is the perfect playmate for her--he never tires of playing with toys and slipping into the world of his imagination. I suppose this is why he and I could never make it as a couple--C doesn't live in the adult world.
While others might envy his ability to play with Eliza for hours, I find it rather destructive. She orders him around and enjoys his complete dissolution into a make-believe world. When she plays with other children her own age, she doesn't like that they don't take orders from her. Last week, I watched him crawl around on all-fours pretending to be a horse. Whenever he tried to sit up, she'd scream, like a brat frankly, "Get back down on the floor, horsey!" While I took some satisfaction in watching him submissively creep around like a begging animal, I didn't like the message that his taking orders sent to our daughter. Tonight, when he spoke to me briefly about their return tomorrow, she screamed "Get off the phone right now." This is not how I want my daughter to act. Talking is useless--C will forever be competing with me for her affections.
I tell myself when she gets home tomorrow and isn't that thrilled to see me after a weekend with her favorite playmate, that's okay, I'll be thrilled to see her. That's what matters in the end, how I feel about her.
But I miss my girl, really miss my girl and the relationship we had that's not necessarily worse, yet different now.