Sunday, January 11, 2009

One Year (12 Months)

One of the most endearing moments in a parent's life comes when their baby turns to toddler. They still have this tiny little baby body but they've become upright and begin to waddle all over the place. It's one of the most adorable things to see, this little tiny person walking around. It's really brought a smile on our faces over here at CasaWex lately. Quinn is a dynamic little one-year-old and even though she hasn't started walking beyond a step or two, she simply knows how to go.

You know that the first year is officially over when your baby can keep up with you. I'll hop up off the sofa to grab something from the fridge and by the time that I turn around, there she is scootching into the kitchen after me with a big smile on her face. She zips about the room almost as fast as the conversation. She's always on a quest to discover all the nooks and crannies in our little castle. She chases after her brother with keen intensity and they madly make haste when they've done something they know we won't like. All of it is just about the cutest thing in the world.

So here's what she did to me the other day. Since the days are growing cold, I finally opened up the fireplace and we built ourselves a glorious fire. Quinn was eager to find out about this new activity and get right in there to help. I was excited to show her this vital element and see her reaction but I didn't want her to get too close because babies also have a tendency to be a little ignorant of certain dangers. One of those dangers that she was very curious about was the lighter that I was using to ignite the fire. I had to snatch it away every time that I put it down because she'd reach for it in two seconds flat. Finally I put the damn thing in my mouth (uh, lead by example you idiot!) and though she kept grabbing for it, I was able to keep it from her. Eventually she gave up with that hopeless game and went back to investigating the pieces of wood and the hearth and pretty much left me alone. Well, that's what I thought as I became more consumed with my task. A few minutes later, all I heard was a loud shriek of delight coming from my daughter's mouth. I didn't know what was happening so I turned to see what was up and she was hightailing it away from me as quickly as she could possibly move. I jumped up as quickly as I could and tracked her down before it even dawned on me the reason that she wanted to get away from me so fast (because that's what parents do, instinct tells you to move, so you move as quickly as you can). well, sure enough she had the lighter in her hand and a smile on her face as wide as could be. She was laughing at me!

But that's the type of spirit embodied in this little one. It's ginormous! Ginormous when she laughs. Ginormous when she greets people at the door. Ginormous when she wants something. Ginormous when she's pissed! Ginormous when she loves you. She really is a little bundle of joy and every day, as she advances further, I am blown away by her potential. This little girl is going to expand the possibilities of our world, I just know it.

Who wouldn't want to feel that way about their children. Isn't that the greatest feeling in life? To hold them and see such a brilliant tomorrow. Being a parent completely empowers you with hope. You grow like a balloon but it isn't air that fills you, it's wonder and awe. It's the blessing of seeing life unfold in an amazing way. There is so much outside our windows that reeks of despair and it's been around for as long as I can remember. But all I have to do is sit down with one of my kids and read a story. Everything immediately vanishes and all I know is the feel of a small heartbeat close to mine as they devour every word. How can you not get strength from such a notion?

Only hugs, people, that's what our global soul is lacking...and maybe a bedtime story or two.

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