Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Baby turns older...

There is no other reason for my absence from the blogging world than sheer unadulterated laziness. Plain and simple. Having confessed, I will await absolution.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my 25 plus years of parenting. I’ve been blessed with two remarkable daughters, each one unique and beloved, each one extraordinarily gifted and singularly quirky. I’ve savored each season, every phase of being their mom. Some were sweet, others tart … but regardless, each one molded and shaped me into the person I am today. It also gave me an appreciation of then and now, the richness and profundity of what has been, but also the wonder and excitement of what will be.
Last night, my eldest (now 25) came home with a friend after having dinner out. They came home in a most grown up way – to have a cup of tea and chat. And although the evening began that way, soon my daughter was hiding in a large box breathlessly waiting to jump out and scare her dad when he arrived. I could hear her breathing heavily, suppressing giggles inside the box while her friend hid in the bathroom also laughing.
I recognized this young woman, professional graphic designer and musician, as the same little girl who would devise complex mazes and art installations for her father to inspect and experience when he came home from work.

Today we’re celebrating my youngest daughter’s birthday.

In years past, that would have meant baking a Barbie cake, and making a pan of homemade macaroni and cheese. There would be two presents to her from us– a “need” (usually a winter coat) and a “want” (Barbie and her accouterments). There would be significant cuddling and a retelling of the day of her birth. It was a perfectly sunny but crisp Monday morning, yes Dad was in the delivery room, no it wasn’t as long as her sister’s delivery, yes I got to hold her right away, no she didn’t cry but instead looked around the room inquisitively and yes – yes! She was the most beautiful little baby in the whole entire world, absolutely perfect in every single way.
This would usually lead to a round of tickling and more cuddling, perhaps even a viewing of old videos of her as a baby, learning to walk, babbling in her made up language and of course, the now famous (in our little world) of her at 6 years old, twirling at her friend’s house declaring “I’m the most beautiful girl in the world!”
Now, at 23, my little girl will come to dinner with her sweetheart. Her menu of choice includes spinach risotto and halibut steaks in a balsamic pomegranate reduction. Gifts will be practical per her instructions and there will be little to no twirling. Although her large expressive brown eyes still twinkle with laughter, she is more reserved, thoughtful and will converse about her upcoming college graduation, month-long trip to Venezuela and other future goals.

And there will be cuddling. Oh yes, plenty of it. There always will be.