Luci is 9 months old. She is long enough now that her head is just under my chin if she is perched on my lap. Lately I am finding myself mourning the loss of my first baby to toddlerdom and now, little-girlness. She is so tall, so articulate and so sassy (note to self: stop being sassy). She dresses herself, uses the restroom and repeats all the things you didn't intend for her to hear.
Now, with Littles on my lap, I am verging on tears. She might be the last baby that is my own, and despite my best efforts to slow her down, she is nearly an entire year old. I kiss her temple, my nose is in the sweet softness of her wispy baby hair and I breathe in. She smells like my baby. I stay here for as long as she'll let me, admiring, from my vantage point, the swoop of the bridge of her nose. Her lashes are long, her eyes are gentle and she sighs. I move to press my nose into her full, round cheeks. They are less round now, power crawling is her new hobby, but still so perfectly squishy. At this, she pushes her head toward me, mouth open and finds my cheek, blowing a perfect raspberry. God I love this child.
Rosanna smelled this way once. She rocked on her diapered bum in excitement and crawled clumsily after me across the house. I am terrified that I will forget how precious this time was. In the frustration of our daily interactions, I do.
Here's to being present.