• F

    dear bee // 25.

    02.21.2013 / FAMILY

    dear bee

    Dear Bee,

    Hello, Ms. Personality. I’m praying for your future boyfriends, friends, teachers, leaders and members of your social circle today. Praying hard. Because you, my dear, are what we lovingly refer to around these parts as “Pistol Pete.” Your opinions are forming faster than we can take note of, but the short list is that you love wall vents, floor vents, ceiling vents, electrical outlets, crawling to said outlets, drawstrings, socks, fabric of any variation and form and you do not love naps, sleep, laying down, cribs, sheets, quiet nursing or calming music. You are a 100% bona fide party animal with a stubbornness that resulted in repeated 10:30pm bedtimes three nights this week. You also do not love the word, “No.” (Clearly.)

    I don’t know where you get it. I truly do not. I choose naps. Always and forever. And I am anxiety-ridden, yes, but I am also easily the laziest, most easy-going, “I don’t care where we eat for dinner and I really mean it” kind of girl that exists. I am the most compliant citizen in the universe and I love the word “No.” I thrive on instructions and love to be told what to do, exactly how to do it and when it needs to be finished. And your father?

    Oh. I see it now, Bee.

    Speaking of that strong-willed man, your father is a rock of the raddest variety. (A gem, even – ha! Geological pun!) He’s been so patient with your bedtime refusals and quirky defiance that I’m sending him away on a snowboarding weekend while we fend for ourselves. It’s going to be a rocky one, I fear, and I’m not talking about the slopes.

    We’re on round three and month two of sleep-training – a game that grows less fun the more we play. It’s like Monopoly – the process goes on forever and ever and eventually everyone is exhausted and not thinking clearly and then all the sudden there’s a pricey deposit on a hotel down the street. But we’re sticking with it, and last night bedtime only took one hour, which is kind of an Olympic record around here. Bronze, yes, but progress.

    The good news is that you are undeniably cute when you’re fighting sleep. Unlike your parents, you don’t grow angered as you tire – you’re just entertained all the more. Suddenly, everything is funny and your mind turns manic as the slap-happiness enters your bloodstream and you collapse into a fit of giggles. Last night, an orange block sent you into the belliest of all belly laughs as it sat on the carpet, just sitting there, existing. Hilarious.

    Your ability to crawl is giving us front row seats to the “Things That Interest Our Daughter” show, and so far, the performance is very long. You are mesmerized by everything – a curiosity that is equal parts inspiring and exhausting as your father and I mentally tick off the inordinate amount of baby hazards that exist within your reach. Sometimes I sit back and watch you as you busy yourself – constantly on the move – peeking around corners and under rugs and through gaps to satisfy your urge to discover more, more, more. You’re the perfect illustration of your nickname – a bee, buzzing through this world, searching and busying and burning a seemingly-endless amount of energy.

    Perhaps we’d be enjoying an easier pace had we nicknamed you Turtle?

    And yet, I am head-over-heels for you. Yesterday, during another one of your nap-fighting stints, I snuck into your room to check in on you and you were ever-so-carefully tracing the lines of the wood-paneled wall as you babbled to your knitted doll, Clementine. And all the sudden, you were 12 years old and I had entered your sacred slumber party to be met with a trio of eye rolls and two-syllable “Mo-om”s.

    Because the truth is, Bee, you are 6-months going on a 6th grader. You have this zest, this energy that simultaneously delights and terrifies me. I suppose every parent feels this way when they begin to see glimpses of their child’s personality, previews of the coming attraction. Because now, it’s real. We’re a family – full of defiance and struggles and independence and beauty and laughter and surprise.

    And whether it’s separation anxiety or teething or baby-proofing floor vents, we’re going to get through it together. You, me, your father and the super funny orange block.


    • Just gorgeous. She sounds like such a character, and your letters are amazing. Something for her to treasure always!

      • @Penny – she IS a character! Thanks so much, sweet dear. :)

    • Oh that sweet pea! I cannot wait to meet her (and I PROMISE it’ll be before her first birthday…geesh!) Let the babyproofing begin!

    • Oh my good gravy that is so sweet! I’m pregnant with my first and am terrified that it will be a girl with my exact personality (she mooned me during the ultrasound on Monday). How will you resist her charms when she’s older??

    • Oh, the trials of sleep again! One night he sleeps 8 straight, the next he wakes 2-3 times, crying. Sometimes he wakes talking to himself and the mobile and the wall, other times he wakes crying. Forrest doesn’t crawl yet but I’m already eying my home in dread of what will have to be stripped down so he won’t grab/push/pull/whack it. BTW, current favorite toy is a red solo cup. And stacking cups that he can clack together. And the maraca in daycare. And grabbing me around the head to open-mouth my face. And…

      Aren’t they so totally awesome, Erin? = )

      • @Jamie – Ha, I love Forrest! And I”m totally going to grab a stack of solo cups next time she’s bored. She’s so busy that she seems to be tiring with the usual suspects. :) Thanks for the tip!

    • This is *exactly* how I feel about my daughter….but she is an exact mini-me and we are not surprised. ;)

    • Phew…sleep training. One of the most trying things ever, but so worth it in the end. Stay strong my friend. And invest in earplugs. :-)

      • Thanks, Kate! We have ear plugs by the handful! ;)

    • Another beautiful letter. And it’s funny to read what is yet to come for us… Parenting: it’s so exciting and tiring, rewarding and terrifying at the same time.

    • Amy K.

      These letters are the most amazing baby book ever!

      If a regular plastic cup is fascinating, a CLEAR plastic cup is positively mind blowing… got me through a whole solo flight with a 4 month old once!

      • @Amy K – Thank you! And I am ABSOLUTELY giving this a go! :)

    • Sabina

      Bee is beautiful.
      These letters to her are very cool!! :D

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