fourteen month francesca. i have sat watching you as if regarding a very quick time lapse. the sun first peeking through the window, then staggering high into the sky brightly shining. finally, receding back to the earth, the shadows growing long over your face. it feels this fast. your hair growing wispy and long over your brow and your eyes growing more inquisitive during this impossibly fast transition from baby to toddler.
your first word was ball. then came papa, mama, el-dee (elodie). then animal sounds. moooow moooow for kitty, woof for dog, oooooo for cow, a perfect whinny for a horse. you say hi and bye bye to everyone with a little grabby wave. ah-boom is still your preferred word for water. and this week, you clutched the baby monitor and exclaimed, "mine." i could scarcely believe what i was hearing, then you repeated it again more urgently, "mine, mine, mine."
the back has started to arch. you become putty when i try to pick you up. you don't like your diaper changed. you fixate on things just beyond reach yelling with frustration. you climb everything. you only want to feed yourself. all i can do is laugh. all i can do is remember your learning is also my learning. i forgot about a lot of these things. some moments are hard.
then come the other moments.
the open mouthed kisses. the hugs. the quiet mornings and evenings we get to share together while nursing. our evening silly time on the bed when you stand up and then throw yourself down, squealing with laughter, again and again. how happy you are how you bounce up and down every time a second of a tune comes on. how very happy you are when i am near. i feel like the luckiest person on earth. in the words of a song i sing to both you and elodie, "you make me feel like a sweepstakes winner."