Aaron got a job in Tallahassee, and soon we’ll be moving into our old home:
Now, that a home and an income are taken care of, I’ve been able to think about other important matters, like what the baby will wear on the way home when it’s no longer covered by a uterus. Thrilled by the millions of people who live in Tampa, I’ve gone on a Craigslist rampage and spent hours contemplating the cheaper Lasinoh double electric breast pump or the Medela version that everyone swears by. I picked up a garbage bag full of cloth diapers, slings, and baby carriers from a fellow Craigslister, and if owning seven slings didn’t make me hip enough, I’ve scheduled our first consultation with the holistic pediatrician in town where even the secretary can talk to me about all the ways to give a baby Vitamin K. In order to be served by the pediatrician, you have to sign a waver that says you acknowledge that vaccines like Hep B do not have to be done when your baby is only an hour old. After feeding Clara Lays potato chips for a snack and using the cheap, adult sunscreen for our afternoon swims, I’m looking forward to rediscovering my inner cloth-diaper-user again. Nothing like a baby to give you a chance to reinvent yourself.
Also, my nesting instinct has finally kicked in. Aaron will be joining us in about a week with a trailer full of all our belongings, which include 1 crib, 1 changing table, 1 rocking chair, 30,000 boxes of girl baby clothes, 1 Kitchen Aid mixer, some forks and spoons, Aaron’s vast wardrobe, and my less-vast wardrobe that I hope to wear again in five months or so. We still have a bed, but other than that we are furniture-less, which made me want to share my nesting instinct with Aaron and my dad by enlisting them both to just build us a bunch of stuff.
Technically, Clara turned two on March 10, but I think she turned two in the conventional sense–in the “my, what an active little girl you have” sense–about a week ago. For awhile, Aaron and I would laugh because at church and such people would say about her even, unflinching stare into their kind, smiling faces, “Oh, she must be tired.” Now, she’s not so much tired as she is “independent,” which is a nice way of saying that her favorite words are “no” and “mine” and “I do it.” But, she’s also as cuddly as ever, insisting that she kiss not only all my ouchies but also her own. She constantly gives unsolicited kisses to the baby, of whom she talks about all the time.
So, here’s a video I debated sharing since right after I took it, I decided with the forethought of my mom, to insist on a different entrance strategy. Clara is no longer at risk of becoming paraplegic by Pack N-Play, but the first couple times were too cute not to video:
She also loves my parents’ dog Gia as anyone loves another living thing that lets you do whatever you want with it:
Here’s another one of Ms. Independence Day standing in front of the sign that always reminds me of where I came from:
Finally, last week we took Clara’s cousin Luke to Tampa’s Jumpin’ Junction where Clara forgot that she had a loving, concerned mother and instead decided she was a motherless twelve-year-old and would, therefore, play like one. A heavily tattooed father was coaxing his four or five-year-old daughter through the inflatable Batman cave when Clara scooted pass the girl to climb the twenty foot ladder to the slide. When the father and his daughter and Clara all made it down, he asked me if she was my daughter. He said she was “absolutely fearless.” I have to force Clara to read books, she only counts to two, and she can only recognize the colors orange and purple. I always assumed I’d have a verbal child who would rather sit side-by-side on the couch and read books rather than go outside. But, it didn’t take but twenty-four hours after Clara was born to realize that being a parent is nowhere near the same as being in control. Even though I’d love to be able to sit through just one bedtime book and understand more than 1/3 of what she says, I am really pretty proud of my little fearless monkey who even at two-years-old has a frightening capacity for persistence when it comes to doing something on her own.