Life keeps moving forward at a pace that is far to fast for me. In less than two short weeks my baby will turn three. My little girl, my darling Elena is a baby no more. She is a full-fledged screaming, laughing, stomping little person now. She has a temper I often find hard to believe. You wouldn't think some one would get so mad about having to put on a pair of shoes. It's quite warm in their bedroom tonight and when I clicked on the fan, Elena screamed "Agh, no fan! Too noisy! I don't like the fan!" This fan is whisper quiet so perhaps the vaguely European part of her genetic makeup has created this no fan feeling in her.
After Eliza fell asleep tonight, Elena was still awake calling for me. I knew it was late but she also wasn't asleep so I took her out of the crib. We snuggled on the couch and she sang silly songs and kept pointing to the TV and saying "Titanic!" She pretended that a small child's mirror in a strawberry embossed leather case was a lollipop and sang the lollipop song. "Take my picture, Mama," she said as she posed with her "lollipop." "I watch TV with Mama!" she said proudly, I think happy to be the one staying up late for a change.
Finally I put her down in the crib, an act for which I was rewarded with about 10 minutes of solid crying. Poor Eliza, she really doesn't get enough sleep between her sister waking at 6am singing "Rumor has it, ooh! Rumor has it, ooh!" at the top of her lungs followed later by Elena's nocturnal rebellion.
Tonight, Eliza woke up around 10:30 to go to the bathroom. She dashed from her room into the bathroom looking like some kind of enchanted sprite in her beautiful long white nightgown that she got for Christmas. She truly looks like an angel in this eyelit off-white creation. I went into the room to kiss her and she smiled at me, asked for water and told me she loved me. Her little arms stretched out for a hug. I didn't know I could love so much.
They are wonderful, they are maddening, they are mine, they are not mine. They will always be my children but they do not belong to me. This past week was Eliza's spring breaks and they spent a lot of time together. It was charming to watch them really forge a relationship but at times it almost hurt how little they need me. Soon they will have their own relationship and I'll be cast into the background, a role I'm not exactly sure I'm suited to play. But as their mom, I know I have to always be the grown-up, step back, and let them go, a little at a time.
We finished shooting "Smash" on March 20th so I've been home for a month now. Sometimes, like now, I find myself blissfully content to be at home with my little children nearby. I find myself often popping into their room and touching their sweet little arms as they sleep, so happy I'm here and that I can look at them whenever I feel like it. Other times I feel almost unspeakably paralyzed by the sheer monotony of taking care of them--the dishes that must be rinsed, the floor I have to sweep, the piles of toys and cut up papers that seems to migrate throughout the house. I stood over the sink the other day as Elena screamed because I wouldn't give her another vitamin and I turned on the water and I really wanted to cry but I didn't. I reminded myself that I'm lucky to be at home, I'm lucky to have these girls, I'm lucky my mother is still alive. I'm so fortunate and so proud of myself for what I've accomplished, largely unassisted. And yet there are still those moments where I really don't know how I can keep doing this. How I wish more than anything, I had more friends, a sibling, anyone to come over sometimes and help break up the endless waltz between stove, sink, dining table and changing matt.
But most of the time, I look at these girls and I can't believe how much I love them. I remember so clearly events from eight years ago, how will I feel eight years from now when my Eliza is 14? I so love having little children, having the power to kiss a sore thumb and hearing my Elena say "Thanks Mama, you made it ALL better."
Tonight, I still have those little girls and because of this blog, this night has been recorded. Life with my little girls is beautiful.