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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Baby Elena nears one

Having a baby is just about the loveliest thing in the world and pretty soon, I won't have a little baby anymore. Oh sure, the toddler years are even more fun and I am enjoying watching her personality unfold. But this year has flown by and now my last little baby, who will always be MY baby, won't be a baby anymore.

The sleepless nights and how the early days pass in a blur of feedings, changings and naps. Those beautiful moments when I strip her naked and trace the line of her chubby leg and just marvel at what my body created. The sheer perfection of her body and the delight her tummy, tushie and chubby, yummy legs incite. The new discoveries; the first smiles, push-ups, rolls, dragging forward on straight legs, thumbsucking, new tastes and new people to love her. I can't even pinpoint certain moments with Elena like I can with Eliza and this bothers me. I suppose this is true of the second child--the first is so new. I remember coming to get her after she spent a few hours at C's for the first time. She just kept smiling at me and I realized, oh, she's happy to see me. I don't remember the first time she waved but I can see her waving. Last week at Costco she pointed, copying Eliza but it wasn't the first time she pointed.

I don't remember the first time she finally crawled on bent legs instead of trying to move forward in a downward dog kind of position. I just know one day she learned to crawl for real. She now knows how to get from a crawling position to a seated position and she'll often drag a straight right leg when crawling to make getting onto her butt easier. I remember the first time she showed real excitement towards food, hurling herself forward in her high chair to get to a spoon of bananas. It was at my mother's house. I don't remember her first bath in the bathtub but I know now, how much fun she has flapping her arms up and down in front of her to splash.

She delights now in her little body, moving from one position to another. She loves toys and is very curious, wanting to open cabinets and doors. She gets a real thrill from banging on Eliza's piano and very clearly likes her father, however little he's been around. She loves my mother, craning her neck to watch her whenever she's in the room. I remember her excitedly crawling towards my mother and my mother had a friend over, too busy to notice. Elena got very upset and my mother had to stop what she was doing and pick her up.

I remember the first time Eliza spotted her on the living room floor, gnawing on a chocolate valentine heart still in it's wrapper. She cried real tears when I took it away from her, clearly enjoying this new and wonderful treat.

She loves to talk now and though she can't say words, she has long conversations with us, the TV and her toys. If I sing "boom boom boom" she makes a "bbb" sound. So she is trying to talk. She is a lovely, lovely, lovely little baby.

I guess I remember some stuff but it still doesn't seem like enough. It all goes by way too fast. I like the sleeplessness of the beginning because it has a way of making it all unfold in slow motion. Then the nights get longer, the sleep gets better and everything moves forward at warp speed. And I can only hold on and embrace what is happening because live everyone, I am unable to freeze this moment and make it last longer.

Oh my baby Elena, what a wonderful gift you are.

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