Do you like how I’m squeezing this in right before you turn 23 months? You will learn many, many things from me over the years, like how to procrastinate with the best of them. I’ve won awards for my procrastination skills, Scarlette. That’s not true. I only won awards for lame stuff like “Read The Most Books Over Summer Vacation” and “Most Boy Crazy.” Please aspire to the former.
You and I spent the month traveling together. We went on a cross country road trip except for instead of driving on the roads, we flew over them in an airplane. This is because sometimes your mother mistakes “a good idea” with “a completely crazy idea.” We talked a lot about how we were going to fly in an airplane, and by talked I mean that I would say “Scarlette! We’re going to fly in an airplane! Can you show me how an airplane flies?” and you would smile charmingly at me and say “JESUS!” because that is your answer to everything.
Which is good because you know, I figured it was probably charming enough to the Lord for Him to keep the plane in the air. And also? I would prefer if you’d continue to use that as your standard response well into your teenage years. You know, like when your friends pressure you to skip third period french class you can be all “JESUS!” because skipping class is wrong and your mother never, ever got lunch detention for doing it.
Turns out, you are nothing like your mother because you love flying and you excitedly squealed “WEEEEEE!” during both take off and landing, completely ignoring the fact that I had my head buried in your carseat. You also charmed everyone on the plane into giving you their cookies, mainly by asking them for their cookies. The flight attendants passed out snacks and you bounced up and down, asking each person in the rows around us “COOKIE?! COOKIE?! PWEASE?!” and then strangers were all “She can have my cookies!” until I had to politely decline because you really didn’t need forty seven packages of cookies. (I realize that seems preposterous because who doesn’t want forty seven packages of cookies so you’ll have to trust me on this.)
We spent a few weeks visiting family and you were introduced to a bunch of your second cousins. It will forever be one of my favorite memories, seeing you play with your family. Family is important, Scarlette. Family is a portrait of grace, because those are the people who invade on your vulnerabilities and test your capability for forgiveness. And family is a beautiful, joyful, abiding love which is the reason your mother got on a plane. Alone. With a toddler.
You’ve started saying so many new words, no doubt a side-effect from being around all of your cousins, and it’s killin’ me smalls. Every time you look at me and say a new word I feel completely shocked and overreact like Taylor Swift winning another award. (You’re totally going to have to google that.) Yesterday I said “Scarlette, what do you want for lunch?!” which is usually just for the sake of hearing myself talk because you normally answer that question with a random word like “BLUE!” or “MORE!” or “JESUS!” but instead you answered “EGGS!”
You smiled at me and said “AYY-GUHS! WAYZUH!” which roughly translated means “Eggs Please!’ and also “FEED ME EGGS RIGHT THIS VERY INSTANT BECAUSE I HAVE NO CONCEPT OF COOKING TIME AND THUS I AM GOING TO FALL OUT ON THE FLOOR BECAUSE I CAN NOT EVEN HANDLE WAITING TWO MINUTES FOR YOU TO PREPARE THIS MEAL!”
Oh by the way, you’ve started throwing tantrums. I am not even going to go there right now lest my head explode all over the computer screen. STOP THROWING TANTRUMS.
Let’s talk about something cute you do instead. You call daddy on your pretend phone all of the time. You’ll hold it up to your head and say “Hello? Hi Daddy!” Except that despite the fact that you tend to make most of your words have many more syllables than they need, you’ve smushed all of “hello” into one syllable and three octaves, so it sounds like “HAOW.” I told your speech therapist not to even dare to touch it because of it’s insane cuteness.
I know from our recent doctor visit that at 22 months you weigh 18 and a half pounds. Normally you weigh more but between your recent sickness and some medication adjustments you’ve lost a little weight. I suspected this when you walked into the kitchen announcing “UH-OH! UH-OH MAMA!” and saw your skirt falling down around your ankles. You are also 31.5 inches tall and all legs, which I discovered when I put a dress on you this morning and thought to myself “Self, that does not look appropriate” because the hem ended just under your tiny little booty.
But no matter how big you get, when you lay your head on my chest and your breathing slows in sync with my heartbeats I gently trace a finger across your brow and see in your face the tiny girl who captured all of my love. Most people say they can’t see it anymore, that you look so different from the one and a half pound baby I gave birth to. But I see it with my mommy eyes that memorized every bit of your face as though it might be the last time I ever saw it. I see that tiny girl in my big girl’s features and I am overwhelmingly thankful for another moment.
All my love,