Today we (meaning Dom) pulled the bassinet up from the basement and set it up in our room. I unpacked some of the baby clothes from the box and put them in the nice new baskets we got yesterday expressly for the purpose, the ones we’d used for Bella’s clothes having since been re-purposed. Likewise, we set up the baby swing in the dining room where Bella has been happily swinging her dolly. And Dom put together the new double stroller my parents were so kind as to give us. I think as far as the physical preparations we’re just about ready to go.
Of course Sophia is paying no attention to such things. As Dom wrote today: “It�s an odd feeling in this hyper-scheduled, by-the-clock world we live in to be forced to wait an indeterminate period of time, unable to make commitments or to schedule anything else while we wait for a little child to decide our plans for us. And so we wait.”
Indeed, we wait.
And yet… this afternoon Bella woke up early from her nap, screaming and crying inconsolably. My mom who’d gone to pick her up put her in my arms. I knew she was still tired but I also know it’s no use trying to get her to go back down to sleep when she gets up too early in the daytime. So I held her and cuddled her, giving her all the mommy love and lap time I can now while she doesn’t have a rival. And I leaned my cheek against her head and slowly my eyes closed and I drifted off. I woke up to find she’d also drifted off. And so we sat there in the recliner for an hour.
After a while I’d napped all I could and my arm had fallen asleep and my leg was getting a cramp. I readjusted her and she stirred a little and then closed her eyes again, resettling. I watched my daughter sleeping and remembered the first times I held her while she slept. The blush on her cheek was the exact same red as the blush on that newborn baby but the cheek was much rounder then, the eyebrows much fainter, the lines of her face were much more blurred and babyish.
Soon there will be another round-faced baby in my arms. And my toddler girl will soon grow too big to sleep while cuddling mommy. I cherished this quiet space, this little reminder: She’s still my baby too, she still needs me.