Holding You

You fell getting down from the couch and hit your face on the floor tonight. I held you and your tears dyed my shirt a darker color, and your screams reverberated in my ears. And you continued to cry as I offered you your lovey and we walked upstairs. "I know. It doesn't feel good. It will soon feel better. But you can cry. I will hold you." These moments don't happen often (I watch myself to make sure I'm not making every fall and boo-boo a dramatic moment), so I sat with her and rocked her in my arms even though I lost feeling in both of my feet. She stared up at me, and here--in this place of undivided attention where she was not exploring the world around her and walking everywhere her little feet felt the freedom to go--this is when I spoke into her the truth.

That my darling daughter is lovely.

That she is fiercely loved by her mommy. That I enjoy being with her and playing with her (and I also enjoy when she finds peace in being without me--for that is what will happen--independence). That she makes me laugh with her personality and her contagious smile. That I learn so much more about tiny things. The things on the ground that I step on or over. She finds them and shows them to me. And we "ooh" and "awe" over the mystery of that tiny thing. That I have learned to act quickly in response to her wild ways and curious mouth. Oh, but that she is sweet and willingly heap upon hugs for us when we ask (and when we don't ask), and that she keeps kissing us when we ask (and when we don't ask). Her soft, 18-month-old lips are so delicate and posed so perfectly to meet mine. That there are so many times when I tell Ben, "man, we are so lucky. She is so beautiful." That when you reach for my finger as we walk along the sidewalk you also reach for your daddy's finger and you hold on so tightly trying to keep step--and we feel so much pride in you. In all that you are doing. And in who you are. That baby, you wouldn't have to do anything--accomplish great things or be the best--to gain our love. You have our love.

And there is so much more I can not wait to tell you as you grow. So many more wonderful truths I want to lavish upon you and speak into you. For Sophia, you are lovely.