Tuesday, July 29, 2008

How Do You Measure A Year?

It's amazing to think that a whole life can be lived a certain way, and suddenly, a new beginning can transform that life completely. Everything is high definition now. That doesn't necessarily mean that everything is one giant Candy Land, for sure, and some things are outside of how I ever could have imagined it to be. For example, I bought an organic, cotton baby doll that I imagined Gianna would snuggle to sleep. Right at this moment, my child has chosen a small canister of brightly colored sprinkles as her nap-time buddy. This is how I know she wasn't switched at birth.

I've spent the last couple of weeks, leading up to her birthday and beyond, pondering and meditating on Gianna's birth and first year. I can't remember life before her, although I think I faintly remember some nights where all we ate for dinner was a warm, crunchy baguette, some triple creme Brie, and all the Lambrusco we could drink.

I've posted multiple times about her birth, and the crushing disappointment in the "FAILURE" that is tattooed onto my heart. No matter how medical a term, the "failure to progress" still feels like a judgement of character to me. It still takes my breath away some days.

Those are the days where I must be determined to let myself be swept away by greater things: the wild golden/caramel cowlicks that are forming curls on Gianna's head; her asymmetrical dimple that lives only on her right cheek, next to her nose; and those eyes, which are a strange color that I can barely describe. It's like someone took Army fatigues and made it into an eye color. The centers are brown, and they radiate out to an olive green, that further lightens to a khaki, and then has a deep blue-brown rim.

She refuses to walk- I think she's going to follow in her Uncle Craig's footsteps, and be determined to crawl until about 14 months old. She cruises everywhere, and at top speed, laughing hysterically. She's even taken a few steps on her own, but crawling must be faster. More imposing, especially to Lola, who skitters nervously when she hears the approaching "slap-slap-slap" of baby paws on the floor.

She is, very simply, my Pearl; my wild child who personifies my own "scarlet letter." I am her mama, so I'm terribly biased, but I'm pretty sure my child is destined for something pretty amazing. As for me, I'm going to continue to enjoy the ride!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Little Signs Everywhere

How do you know that you have a pre-toddler in the house? Besides, you know, the actual sighting of a mobile baby? Here are some signs:

- Even though you have a dog that spends a lot of time indoors, the floor is pretty clean. This can be the result of the pre-toddler playing the "Yuck*" game with Mom, Mom vacuuming and Swiffering many times a day, or the crawling, pre-toddler wearing static-y clothing that attracts absolutely every last follicle of dog hair and deposits it all into the dryer.

*Yuck Game- First, the pre-toddler locates a "yucky" object, usually a tuft of dog fur (AKA, a "Lola Tumbleweed.") Next, she gets Mom's attention, usually by chanting, "Mom-mee, Mom-mee, dis. Dis. Mom-mee, dis." When Mom looks at her, she grins a villainous grin, and pops the treasure into her mouth while saying, "Guck," and Mom leaps into the air saying, "Oh, YUCK!" as well.

- You have books and a spoon on your bathroom floor.

- You have a pile of shoes in the kitchen. Dinner will never be accomplished, otherwise.

- The stairs are usually barricaded, and the dog now leaps high into the air to ascend them, even when the pre-toddler is in bed and the barricades are taken down.

- The dog has a homestead under the high chair.

- Toys are ignored, and the vacuum attachments are the star of the day. So is the Swiffer.

- You find yourself saying, "Feet stay out of Mommy's dinner." "Only pat Lola where her fur grows."

- You narrate your entire day to the pre-toddler, and then later automatically narrate everything you are doing while on the phone with the recalcitrant auto insurance people.
("Now Mommy is taking her pen and writing the words, 'find new auto insurance when this is all over,' onto her 'To Do' list.")

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Irony, Absolutely Everywhere

Well, they did it. They finally got me.

The driving while texting teenagers, that is.

We're the smushed gray car on the left. Which shockingly, is actually NOT totaled, as I once thought. It is under repairs.

The tri-colored teen-mobile on the right belongs to a 16 year old who thought he'd cultivate his multi-tasking skills by texting a message on his cell phone while veering directly over the yellow line and into our lane.

Whiplash and scrapes and bruises aside, we are all okay. Gianna was rear-facing in her Britax Diplomat, and her only after effect so far is a loud, screaming cry when she's startled. Whiplash really hurts, readers. Planning a funeral would have hurt a whole lot worse, though.

The car seat has already been replaced, and I'm planning on rear-facing her until she's old enough to complain about it using full, properly tensed Latin sentences.

So, now I begin to collect info on other states that have better NO CELL PHONE laws. As if I needed another cause!

Where on earth did I put that arnica? And why does this spell checker try to helpfully suggest that arnica is better spelled, "fornicate?"