My youngest is now 2 years and 4 months old. She goes to “school”, runs like the wind to keep up with her big brother and sister, speaks in full sentences (some of which I can understand), is potty trained, and has about a 75% success rate with utensils and regular cups (plastic – please, I’m not that adventurous).
And yet, I can’t stop. I simply can not stop calling her my baby.
This is absolutely karma coming to bite me because before I was here, in this place with a “baby” of my own, I would roll my eyes at anyone who would refer to a walking, talking, child as a baby. Quit holding that child back! Quit babying!
Then I met her. My older 2 are fiercely independent, content to be left to their own devices and constantly looking towards the future with their stories of “when I am big…!” If I ever even tried to call them babies in their toddler-hood, the notion was shot down immediately; “I no baby! I big!” But not my littlest. She’s got some independence in her own right, but mostly she is happy to be exactly where she is and who she is. A cuddle bug with spontaneous urges for hugs and kisses which she gives into without hesitation. Rushing simply isn’t for her.
So we both dance this dance.
We share a sweet little made-up song called…you guessed it: “My Baby” and she asks me to sing it to her daily. And when she does, the world spins a little slower. I pull her into my arms, I smell her head just as I did the first time I held her more than 2 years ago, and everything else fades away.
Soon enough there will be no baby left in this child, the world will sweep her up into whatever big plans it has in store, but for now I’m taking a cue from her – I’m not rushing it.