Last night, my little came around the corner after already going to bed…twice. She “needed” water. And of course, it had to have ice. It was already two hours past her bed time, and while I should have been mad, or at least, pretended to be mad, I smiled. I remember when she was a baby, and we sat her in her little bouncy seat on the kitchen table. I remember when she was learning to crawl, and then walk…and how we always covered the corners of our rectangular kitchen table with our hands, so she wouldn’t bang her head.
And somehow seeing her round the corner from the hallway to the kitchen, she seemed so much bigger, so much taller. She wasn’t my little baby anymore. And the kitchen where she’d taken her first step, her first taste of rice cereal, her first scrambled egg; a place where she was so dependent on me for nurturing, guidance and help, she was now navigating on her own. She was tall enough to reach into the cupboard for her glass, strong enough now to press the ice maker on the fridge, and coordinated enough not to let the water run over the glass, and spilling onto the floor.
I was watching her every move, as if it was in slow motion, and my mind kept flashing back to her as a baby. Eight years has come and gone by in an instant.
After she filled her glass, she came over and hugged me hard. “Thanks, mom” she said. I know I could have argued with her over being up so late, over coming down to get a glass of water instead of just rolling over and going back to sleep. And I think she knew it too, because she saw the look on her daddy’s face – he was not smiling. He was upset that it was so late and she was not asleep.
And as she strolled back through the kitchen and up the stairs to her bedroom, my husband just looked at me in disbelief, “You’re such a pushover!” he laughed.
Yah, some may see it that way, I suppose.
But not me. I see a little girl, who’s only little for a little while. I see a little girl who will be going on dates, falling in love, leaving the house and starting a life, independent of us.
So once in a while, if my little girls wakes up and wants water, with ice, two hours after bedtime, that’s okay with me.