Stillness

Stillness

Tonight, I went to check on Briana. I always do before I go to bed. But tonight, I sat next to her bed on the floor and watched her sleep for a while. During the day, she is a whirlwind. She never sits still for long, and even when she is sitting, she isn’t still. 
Tonight, there was something about her face I couldn’t make myself walk away from, and it took me a few minutes to figure it out. I could see baby Briana in her face tonight. Something about her expression and the way she was laying, she just didn’t look like her normal three-year-old self. She looked younger.

And any parent knows, your kid looking YOUNGER than they actually are is a rarity. Older, sure! But not younger.

So, I sat and I watched her. And I thought about how when she was a baby I was always so excited about the next milestone, wondering when she would crawl, walk, talk, and on and on. I thought about how it used to just be the two of us during the day, and how much time we would spend cuddling on the couch or playing peek-a-boo.

I thought about how heartbroken I was to go back to work, and about how she was just two months older than Chelsea is now when that happened. I remembered how much I worried about leaving her with someone else, and how much she absolutely didn’t care that I left her that first day. 

I realized that at some point since her baby sister has been born, I’ve stopped looking forward to milestones. I am still delighted by them when they happen, I still cheer my babies on. But milestones make me sad, too. Because I know that tomorrow I will wake up and both of my babies will be a day older. I will have one day less of them being babies in my future, and one day more of their lives will be in the past. 

Briana has grown and changed so much in the three short years I’ve had the privilege of being her mommy. And her sister is racing to catch up with her. 

So tonight I sat by her bed and let all the sweet memories play through my head. And then, just before I got up off the floor, I kissed her nose, right between her eyes. I’ve kissed her there since she was a baby, but haven’t done it since the baby was born. I don’t know why. Maybe because Chelsea tolerates my kisses between her eyes better than her whirlwind sister. 

I kissed her, anyway, and she snuggled deeper into her pillow and smiled in her sleep, and my heart melted…just a little bit. So I kissed her again. She frowned and rolled away from me with a little huff…and I had to stifle a laugh, because even in her sleep she is a sassy little thing. 

Hold onto the precious moments of stillness. I have the feeling they get even fewer and farther between.

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Firsts

Firsts

We are moved into our new apartment, barring a few items that still need to be moved from my in-laws house to here, and I am very excited. It feels so nice to have our own apartment again, and I am going to turn on my music and dance around the living room the first chance that I get.

Last night, for the first time since B was born, she slept in her own room. I cried a little, not gonna lie. And I still can’t figure out if I was crying because I was so happy to finally be able to provide her with her own room, or if I was sad that she wasn’t going to be in our room anymore. Either way, I cried.

I had the baby monitor turned up really loud in our room. I was really nervous that I wouldn’t wake up for her if she needed me. Of course, this was a ridiculous fear. The very first time she made a tiny sound, I sat bolt upright in bed and was ready to fly across the apartment to her bedroom. 🙂

She slept fine. She woke up once at about 4:30 in the morning. Her diaper was wet, but I also think she may have been cold, so I added another layer of clothes after I changed her diaper, gave her a hug and a kiss, put her down, and she went right back to sleep.

In the last two weeks or so, she has refused to be rocked to sleep anymore. She allows you to rock her for a minute or two, but then she wants to be in her crib and puts herself to sleep. I know this is a healthy development, and that I should be happy I don’t have to rock her for an hour on nights she is restless and fighting sleep, but really my heart is aching a bit. I can’t believe how fast she is growing up.

Another first happened just minutes ago. I was trying to rock her to put her down for a nap (she has still been wanting to be rocked for naps, just not for bedtime), and she started fighting me, so I put her down in her crib. But then she was trying to turn it into a game and wasn’t laying down, and I was getting frustrated…so I walked out and shut the door.

She immediately started crying, and I really wanted to rush back in and pick her up and kiss her and tell her it was okay, but I was too frustrated, and I knew she needed to sleep. So, also for the first time ever when I was trying to get her to sleep, I let her cry.

She only cried for maybe a minute, then calmed down. I heard her “talking” to her stuffed puppy, and then she went to sleep.

Darn. She doesn’t need me so much anymore.

And now that she is asleep I should be finishing unpacking the kitchen, but I’m sitting on my brand new couch, feeling sad about my daughter growing up instead. She will be 16 months old in 2 days! Where has the time gone?

First Time Mommy
(Wanting to Turn Back Time)

Shift Changes are both good and bad…

Shift Changes are both good and bad…

My husband had his work schedule get changed on him again, so now he works 1:30 to 10:00PM. Which means that I am suddenly working mornings for the first time since I went back to work when B was 7 months old. I wasn’t sure how I felt about this…it cuts down on the time I am home with B during the day, and it’s hard to not be there when she wakes up, when she’s eating breakfast and lunch, when she goes down for her nap. I feel even less like a stay-at-home mom now, even more like a working mom. 

It’s silly, since I am probably going to be working about the same number of hours, and if you subtract the two hour nap B takes during the day, I’m really spending about the same amount of time with her as I was before…maybe an hour less. But it feels like a LOT less time. I miss her little face all day long.

One good thing is that I get her AFTER her afternoon nap now…when she’s all bubbly and energetic and ready to play. That’s new. Most of our mornings are pretty mellow, with just a little playing and a lot of sleepy grumpiness and breakfast and lunch and naps. Afternoons are her I AM AWAKE time, and now, for the first time in a long time, I get to enjoy that more than twice a week on my days off. And that has been wonderful and refreshing. I feel closer to her than I have in a couple of months. It’s hard for me to enjoy my time with her when I’m trying to stick to a schedule so I can get ready for work and get her out the door. Coming home from work and spending unhurried and relaxed time with her has been a nice change.

The other BIG, HUGE, GINORMOUSLY WONDERFUL change is that I am home for bedtime. Nearly every night! (Two days a week, when D is off of work, I am still occasionally working the late shift.) For those of you who have followed my blog from the beginning (way back when we were still MisAdventures of a New Mom), you’ll know that’s a HUGE deal for me. I am SO happy to have the chance to once again have that special time before bedtime with my girl. Bathtime, storytime, bedtime…it’s mine again! I get to snuggle her close and recite the Muppet Babies Nightlight book from memory while she turns the glowing pages for me. I get to rock her and sing to her and tell her I love her and have her snuggle into me like I’m the most comfortable place to sleep in the whole world, and I get to do it five days out of seven, at minimum. I am so grateful.

This may not be a permanent shift for David, so this may just be for a few weeks, but even if it is, I’m going to enjoy every minute of it that I can…and try not to think about the sleepy morning routines that I’m saying goodbye to for now. It is so hard for me…I feel like I need to have it all and I can’t! There’s not enough hours in the day. I can’t have mornings with her AND nights, and that’s just not fair. I want both, and afternoons and overnights, too! 🙂 But at least I have time with her. At least I have a happy, healthy, well-loved little girl.

Ack! I always revert to complaining. I’m a stay-at-home mom at heart, what can I say?! I’ll try to be good.

I will say that when I got home from that first early shift and my mother-in-law brought her to the door and Briana saw me getting out of the car and started waving and wiggling to get down, and she came straight to me once I was inside, and I scooped her up and gave her a hug and she wrapped her little arms around my neck and then planted a big ole kiss on me when she pulled back…that made my heart smile. Moments like that make my world go ’round. The best part of being a mom is getting to experience that level of pure love. Uncomplicated and overwhelming. It’s amazing.

Anyway, I’m getting tired…and I have to work in the morning!

I’ll try to get a blog up again a little after Christmas to talk about our Christmas adventures. We’re going to try to take B for Santa Claus pictures this weekend!