You know, I think as new parents, you really want to be able to say things like, “Ah, it feels just like yesterday!” or “My, how time flies!” (even though I rarely start exclamatory statements with “my” or “ah”). I think you want to because it’s just been an absolute delight raising your little baby. We were watching the movie last night (you know, the movie…the one I’ve been tirelessly been working on for the last three months or so that I’ll be presenting at the birthday party tomorrow) and I see myself in the videos and I see Ellison and I kept thinking, “Man, what year is this?” It’s feels like three years ago.
I’m not gonna lie to you (to which you should thank me because in this relationship, it’d be really easy to lie): this year has been the longest year of my entire life. And, I would say, it’s largely because of the nights. Sleepless nights make days seem like weeks. Not that I haven’t enjoyed much of it along the way because I certainly have. It just seems like a total fabrication to say this year has flown by because I was having so much freaking fun. That it was like being at Six Flags everyday eating hot dogs and riding the Judge Roy Scream.
It’s hard work. It’s a full time job. A job that leaves you confused. Bewildered. It’s like that dream you’d have of showing up to the first day of school only to find out it’s not the first day of school but it’s a month away from finals and you don’t know the combination to your locker so you can’t get to your text books. Raising a child drives a nail of doubt and worry into your very core. It shakes you. You question every move. You become paranoid. You become hypersensitive. You cry without warning. Sometimes at commercials. You laugh hysterically. Sometimes at funerals. Delirium. The virtual land of confusion.
But make no mistake, I love this girl.
I have the privilege to come home everyday to the two greatest women in the world…my lovely wife and Ellison and there’s not much that tops that.
And, as we change gears now and high-tail it into the second year, undoubtedly, we’ll have more questions. More mysterious rashes. More sleepless nights. More cuts, scrapes and bruises that we can’t explain. We’ll cry. We’ll laugh. We’ll rejoice.
But we can’t proceed until we discuss what we learned this last month. So what did we learn?
- We’re walking. Officially stepping into “toddler” phase. Everything needs to be four feet or taller.
- She’d climb anything and everything if you would just turn your back long enough.
- Pacifier life become thing of the past.
- Bottle out. Sippy cup in. Independent feeding has commenced.
- Swift and severe “no’s” are usually a fine deterrent, but get ready for a screaming fit with tears.
- Coffee is still dad’s best friend. A cold beer is his second best friend.
- Ellison’s inside voice is more suitable for large inside spaces.
- No cuddling for this girl. If you ever had an opportunity, those days are long gone. Attempting to cuddle will be get either the “ironing board” or “death roll.” Choose your poison.
- We’ve moved from describing size in “percentiles” to endearing adjectives.
- If the training wheels weren’t off yet, they are now.
That’s it. Big ol’ birthday celebration tomorrow complete with lady bugs. Not real ones. The historical drought here in Tejas pretty much leveled the population of all bugs and insects. Doctor asked us the other day if we were doing a “princess birthday party.” Guess that’s customary for little girls. Glad we’re not the “princess” and “pink” type around here. I’ve seen more pink in the last twelve months than I’ve seen in my entire life. Honestly, a little tired of pink. Red and black is a nice change. And it comes just in time for the start of Texas Tech football. Fitting.