April 20th, 2012
Tonight, when I was bathing you, I cried as I watched you take your Thomas the Train train and properly put it in the suction cupped train tracks that adorn the side of our bathtub. You got the train set from your Great Aunt Donna and Uncle Doug for Christmas. Daddy and I used to laugh watching you try to use it properly. You would smash the train against the track, and then sneak a peek at the end of the track to see the train fall off the side and into the water. Why wouldn’t it? You had watched Daddy and I do it many times before. You were persistent and patient, despite the fact that it would never happen.
Tonight, however, you skillfully put the train on the track and watched with enthusiasm as the train glided quickly on the track and eventually fell off the edge and into the water. You were so proud that you would gleefully look back at me and clap your hands with joy. I, of course, was so taken back by how obviously brilliant you are becoming, I burst into tears. In only a few short months, you went from incapable to capable. From baby to toddler. And I was as painfully sorrowed as I was proud.
I wiped my tears, scooped you out of the tub and carried on with our night routine. Right…the night routine….continuing on with the theme of you getting old far too fast!
You used to need me to hold you a few minutes after the sound machine was put on. Just a few minutes. But enough to make you drowsy. And enough to help me reconnect with you each night. But for about a week now, you haven’t needed it. I finish Snuggle Puppy, and the second I put on the sound machine, you are physically reaching and “uuh, uuh-ing” your way to the crib. I ask you, “Are you ready to go in your crib’ and you say “yeah” (That’s your new thing these days. You say it in a very exaggerated, high pitch voice, going from high to low). Then, when I say “Good night baby. I love you,” you say “bye.” Again, just like with the Thomas the Train thing….a little piece of me dies on the inside because it’s just another indication that you are maturing, growing, and already, needing me less.
So tonight, after the trauma of the bathtub scene, we listen to Snuggle Puppy. Like on cue, the second I start the sound machine, you reach for the crib. *Sigh* What a night….My little monkey’s growing up.
I come out to the kitchen and start cleaning your high chair table. I hear you cry. But it’s not a little “settling in” cry. It’s an “I’m not happy” cry. It’s a “Now that I’ve thought about it, that was too fast” cry. As far as I’m concerned it’s a “Don’t worry Mama, I still need you Mama” cry. I’m secretly thrilled.
I don’t wait the customary 10 minutes that Daddy and I have as a rule. I rush in. I save you from the crib. You wrap your arms around my neck and lay your head on my shoulder. And as I rock you, I smell your hair and kiss your head and think to myself “I’m gonna miss this. I’m gonna want this back. I’m gonnna wish these days hadn’t gone by so fast. These are some good times. So take a good look around. I may not know it now. But I’m gonna miss this.”
Thank you baby, for humouring Mama tonight. I choose to believe that you “read” your Mama and knew that i needed to know that you still needed me tonight. And don’t forget. Any time you let out an “I’m not happy cry,” I will always come running….