Dear Paisley: Month 14

July 1st, 2011

Hey there funny little girl! Actually, silly, I call you silly girl quite a bit because lately that sums up your personality so much. You’re so playful and happy all (most) of the time. You make up funny little games, make funny little facial expressions, goofy little noises, and it’s pretty non-stop all day every day. We love it! In fact, can’t get enough of it.

You’re a twirler. We call it turning or spinning, but whatever you call it, you love to do it. Your daddy told me not too long ago “you used to dance all the time at random, but no so much any more.” I wish I weren’t so caught up in my own chaos to not let loose and just dance now and then. You aren’t caught up in anyone’s chaos, you just turn. You throw your right arm out across your chest and then follow its lead. You say “weee!” while doing it and never stop smiling. That’s one of those moments I wish I could put in a bottle so that one day, when the chaos does find you, I can say “Look… you used to turn and say wee because nothing else mattered. In that moment, that’s the only thing you cared about.”

I won’t even bother with the redundancy that your vocabulary is taking off, it took off a long time ago, and now we’re just trying to keep up. You walked up to Papa Kerry on a recent visit, stopped, pointed, and said “Paw-paw!” Kiddo, you made that man’s month! The name we somehow came up with for your blanket, “fuzzy,” you’ve adopted yourself. The earlier part of the month you started saying “see,” and then I realized it was the end of the word fuzzy. In the last week you’ve gone fully in to saying the entire word, and it’s darling. Your love affair with that blanket is second only to watermelon and your daddy’s shoes. When we ask you what color something is your answer, invariably, is yellow. I don’t care how red, blue, purple, or green something is, it is yellow. When I commented about this, your Great Grandma Rochelle said “Good Girl. Color the world to suit yourself.” I liked that a lot.

You’re starting to come up with sayings too, not just single words. My favorite are “nigh-nigh day-dee,” or “good night baby.” You pound the holy hell out of your little Curious George doll’s back as you try to mimic the way we put you down to sleep at night and tell you good night baby. It’s rather endearing and very funny. While you’ve been taking baths in the tub since you were about four weeks old, you have never said bath. But after taking quite well to our shower, you quickly learned the word and will take off running in to our bathroom, pry the shower doors open, and wiggle your hiney (another new funny word) hoping we’ll put you in it. You also say “I got you!” You little heartbreaker! It actually sounds like “got chu” something you learned from many games of chase where you always lose and don’t mind one bit.

Speaking of colors, that pristine baby white skin is gone, you’re now a suntanned summer baby. You are slathered in SPF 55 every time we walk out the door, so the good news is that you’ve never burned. Those pesky rays still find you and I won’t lie, I’m super envious of your complexion right now. Right down to the legs you never have to shave when you put on a swimsuit. And how your little buddah belly looks AAAAdorable in a swimsuit, and mine, well, let’s just say I wear a lot of sundresses.

You’re becoming quite the little water baby, which makes me happy! I’m (almost) 30 years old and something most people don’t know about me is I’m scared to death of pools, lakes, and other places full of hundreds of gallons of water where my feet can’t touch the bottom. I don’t want this for you. I want you to be comfortable in the water. We took you and Ellie to play in the Riverside fountains and you, at first, completely freaked out. But Grandma Lori and Ellie convinced you it was OK and you took to it so well you were trying to drink out of the sprays of water. We’ve been to two pools and you loved both, but prefer to be held versus placed in a floating device. Get a cocktail and an air mattress and your mind will change!

Then, there was the road trip, something I named #TripOfDoom. Seriously, I’ve told the story in full detail so many times that I don’t think I can muster the strength to do it again. Also, I don’t want my blood pressure to spike. In short, you and I took off from OKC one fine Saturday morning to spend four days in Dallas with Ada and Christie. Our first road trip together. Our first trip without daddy. We were having a freaking fantastic time! An hour and a half into the trip you passed out, and I said thank you to the universe because it would be smooth sailing the rest of the way. Then, our radiator exploded. We were stuck on the side of the road for an hour and a half, in 90-something degree heat, a toothless tow truck driver arrived and regaled me with a story of his daughter’s cherry (no lie), and then we took the car to the Ardmore Walmart … where it stayed for seven days. Seven long, frustrating, losing-my-cool, very expensive days. A car rental and one thousand dollars later the car went home. Some other stuff happened in between, but again with the blood pressure and wanting to one day be around to fight with you about prom dresses.

You put on your big girl panties this month. Another one of those bittersweet milestones. No more bottles. I was afraid to do it, you love your bottle. A bottle, fuzzy, and a mommy or daddy and you are in snooze city. One Saturday morning I brought you a sippy cup. I will probably not ever forget the look on your face. If you could have cussed at me, I believe the sentiment would have been along the lines of “WTF MOM!” In short, you were not impressed. You cried. You cried so hard and it broke my heart. But you were too hungry from 11 hours of fasting to argue the point much more than that, and so you placed the spout into your mouth and cried between sucks until you finally realized it was the same milk. The next few mornings went about the same until I finally felt it was safe to put your bottles in a Target bag and throw them in the “baby stuff box.” I’m more impressed that you haven’t sloshed milk all over yourself and us in the process. You’re a tidy sipper.

As we celebrate your 14th month, we also celebrate the five-year anniversary of I can’t tell you hard it is to believe that five years have passed since all of this started. One day I will tell you the whole story, if you don’t find it on the Internet first (which, by the way, is where I’d prefer you learn about sex, drugs, and math). When I tell you, I will cry. I’ll probably cry a lot. But they will be happy tears. Without this site, I honestly don’t know if we’d have you yet. A lot, A LOT, of people made you possible. I write these letters to you every month because I want you to hear my voice and how I remember this amazing time with you. But it’s also a small way for me to give back to the hundreds of people who played big and small roles in making you a reality, by letting them peek in at our life with you.

I say it every month, but every month it’s more true than the last, I’m having so much fun with you!

I love you so much, bug!