Monday, March 10, 2014

{ What I don't want to forget about 19 months }

Note: This is in no way a finished post. What follows below was written on January 20th, with the intention to finish it up and publish it ASAP...and that never happened. But since Lainie is now 20.5 months old, changing faster than I can blink, and I don't appear to be acquiring any more free time for blogging, I'm sending this out into the world as is. I really don't want to forget.


The way she curves around my belly when I rock her to sleep. The way her head fits perfectly in the crook of my shoulder. Her silky-soft golden brown hair; that wispy mullet in the back. How she can now pull open drawers that {moments ago, it seems} were too high and too heavy for her to budge. How in the past week she's starting saying "UP!" in a commanding, deeper-than-normal, slightly annoyed voice, complete with arms up, but no eye contact. The way she hopefully suggests "Ba?" {bath} during every diaper change. Her obsession with "ee-ee" {Caspar Babypants music videos}, and the somewhat disturbing fact that she knows how to plug the HDMI cable from the TV into my laptop to make "ee-ee" happen. Her delight at turning on and off light switches, also known as "ight." The way she loves to help pick up clothes and put them in the laundry hamper or washer--and how just a few days ago, she realized she can open her dresser drawers, and now delights to "put away" her own clothes {never mind that they are never folded or in the right drawers by the time they've traveled from me to Lainie's drawer of choice}. How she has started calling herself "Nee-nee" and refers to herself with giddy delight. Her fascination with earrings, and frequent conversations that go something like this:

Lainie {touching her earlobe}: "Ear!"
Me: "Yes, that's Lainie's ear."
Lainie {furrowed brow and shaking her head, still touching her ear}: "!"
Me: "No, Dada doesn't have earrings."
Lainie: "!"
Me: "No, Bapa doesn't have earrings."
Lainie: "!"
Me: "No, Lainie doesn't have earrings!"
Lainie {triumphantly pointing to my ears}: "Mama!"
Me: "Yes, Mama has earrings."
Usually followed by a discussion of why I'm not wearing earrings today {if I'm not} or a detailed examination of said earrings if I am.

Monday, March 3, 2014

{ Thankful }

Today I am thankful for the certainty that I right here, surrounded by milky burp cloths and MegaBlocks, a perpetually-running clothes washer and two tiny humans who depend on me for pretty much everything, is exactly where I am supposed to be. Doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing. I also know myself well enough to know that this certainty is probably fleeting. Counters full of dirty dishes, or pine needles strewn across the floor, or a nap for Lainie that I deem "too short" may easily send me into a self-centered tailspin of I can't handle this! Life with two littles is too much! 

The truth is, I chose this. I wanted--and still do want--this. I begged God for years to let me be a stay-at-home mom if and when the time came for me to be married and have children. I was completely uninterested in dating any man who also did not hold this as a non-negotiable component of marriage. This has always been my biggest dream. But it is hard. So much harder, in reality, to be okay with this level of I'm-not-in-control...the tiny humans I created seem to be in charge instead.

But, this morning, I am okay with the clutter. With how loooooong it takes to do the simplest tasks with a toddler-helper and a baby who loves to nurse all.the.time. With the astonishing fact that we suddenly create a full load of dirty laundry {And the accompanying astonishing fact that it is well-nigh impossible to find time to fold said load of laundry. When did folding laundry become so hard?! And why?} So I am reveling in this certainty, frolicking in it, you could even say. Because it is delightful and, honestly, completely new and foreign to me to be so sure of the rightness of this while simultaneously looking out over a home full of unfinished tasks that I know I will not be able to complete anytime soon.

I'm thankful that Lainie woke up at the same time as me--even though I'm learning that my days are much smoother if I can at least take a shower, eat breakfast, and nurse David before she wakes up. I'm thankful for mountains of oatmeal, slathered in butter and brown sugar, and for the coffee Mike makes {and leaves for me} before I'm even awake. I'm thankful for Lainie's enthusiastic help with David's bath when it became apparent that all three of us were in dire need of bathing. For the smell of baby lotion and snuggly sling time while washing dishes. For food to eat, dirty dishes to wash, and hot water. For raindrops heavy on the roof and a cozy house. For a husband who works so hard to make this--this--possible: Me. Here. Doing these things. May I never take this work, this incredible and costly privilege, for granted.

These babies are my greatest work. And if the housekeeping suffers {it will} and the meals are less than gourmet {they are} and the hours are long and unpredictable {!!}, I am still so incredibly thankful and blessed to be here. Doing these things.

And since the tiny man is now making it clear that he is desperate for my attention, I'm going to give it to him!