Hard work. That is how I would describe her.
Invariably, if I can’t find Harlow, this is where she is.
Or somewhere equally unsafe.
Removing her is met with one of two reactions; screaming
indignation or blatant wilfulness as she climbs right back to where she started.
I love this child of mine but she is constant work for if
she is not adventuring, she is demanding to be held.
Would that I could give in to the endless requests for
snuggles. Lord knows the weight of her in my arms still feels like heaven. She
gives herself over so completely to a cuddle, she sinks into me, her little body
grown heavier with the trust she places in my arms. When she burrows
her sweet face into my neck, I am gone.
Tonight she did not want to go to bed. I held her in my arms
but she struggled to get free so I put her in her cot. She lay on her back and
prepared to wail inconsolably. There she was, in the dying light of a long day
spent exploring outside, resisting the sleep she so desperately needed. I
stroked her little face, murmured softly that she was okay. I traced a line
across her worried little brow and her eyelashes flickered shut. I traced a
line across her sweet, round cheeks and when I reached the soft skin beneath
her chin, she smiled, gave a tiny giggle.
Over and over, I traced these same lines and she lay
contentedly, staring into my eyes, fighting the weight of sleep upon her
eyelids. I wished I could capture the moment somehow. Knowing that I could not
reach for my phone without losing it, I wrote these words in my head.
I want to remember forever my daughter’s precious face in
her shadowy bedroom, little body stretched out in a blue and white striped
sleepsuit that belonged to her brother before her, maybe both brothers, and how
I still thought she looked just like a girl, how hers is the prettiest face I
have ever seen.
She is seventeen months old now. She is hard, hard work – in
her quest to be grown; to do and to see; to discover; to adventure.
Her demands exhaust me.
But if I could press pause on this moment, I would. I know it
is slipping away.