I just got Halia to bed. She didn’t ask to be breastfed and I didn’t offer. I feel conflicted about this. I’m pretty much ready to be done, but then again I wasn’t expecting to be done. She still likes to nurse in the mornings sometimes, so it’s not like breastfeeding is done done. But I think the end is in sight. I’m not sure why this is not making me leap for joy.
I’m not allowed to call her a baby. Every day she insists, “I’m a big girl!” Today she declared, “I don’t need a bib. Because I’m not a baby anymore.” She astonishes me with the sentences she concocts.
She’s losing her baby-talk. I’ve been teaching her how to add the “s” at the beginning of those s-plus-consonant words like snake, squirrel, star, stop. Now she loves to say, “Ssssssss-gwirrel” and “Ssssssssssnake”. We almost never hear “Daw!” and “Dop!” She still sounds adorable, but she’s clearly not so babyish.
Still, she sings it: “Kookabudda sits in de ol’ gum twee-ee, mewwy, mewwy king a da bush is he-ee!”
And also: “Deep in da Hun-dwed A-cah Wood, where Chwistunnah Wobin plays…”
She hasn’t tried to climb out of her crib, but she’s asked for a big-girl bed.
With Jade, the milestones came so late, we had almost no nostalgia for the passing of babyhood. With Halia, though, I can see her racing to catch up to her big sister, and she runs so fast it leaves me dizzy.
There’s no room for aching when my heart is swelling, though, and every day I get her declarations of love. She can say, “I luff you!” And she does say it, at the most surprising moments.
But I think my favourite declaration is one she uses most often in the mornings: “I want to ‘nuggle you!” So we snuggle. And big girl or little, she still fits perfectly in my arms.