Lately, my 17 month old has been asking (via grunting) to play her favorite CD when we get into the car. When it comes to a song she doesn’t like, she whines, demanding we move on to the next one. Yesterday she grabbed her rolled up diaper that had been left by the couch and threw it in the trash without being told. She didn’t even look for any praise afterwards. Today she held an open cup of water and drank out of it without spilling.
It’s the little things that transpire day after day that give me clues to the inevitable happening: growing up. Every time I think about it I get sad and wish for time to slow down just enough for me to really enjoy these stages of her life. I have to remind myself, though, that while it’s ok for me to feel the heartache due to her not being my baby anymore, it shouldn’t shadow the amazing fact that she is growing, getting more independent, and learning to be.
Though I am somewhat ashamed to admit this, she still sleeps in our bed every night. We have pretty much weaned her off the bottle save the one she had before bedtime. And when she gets cranky in her car seat, she still asks to hold my hands, just like I did on her first car ride home from the hospital. These things I am not letting go of…yet. I hold on to them because I know that one day, I’m going to wish for her to still want to cuddle at night and look for me when she needs comforting. And no matter how many times in the future she tries to let go, I will always, always be holding on.