Dispatch from Home: A new bed

I'm holding my daughter's hand as we lay in the dark together, she in her toddler bed and I on the carpet next to her. We hold hands for a while as she gets used to the darkness. I don't mind one bit since I love the feel of her soft, plump hand in mine. I rarely get to hold her hands anymore since she's always so busy running around with her four-year-old brother.

I love my daughter's tiny hands, her long fingers as strong as her will

This is her first night in her toddler bed and she is petrified of it, even though it is really just her crib with one side removed. She's been wanting a bed for a while now.

It never occurred to me that she would be scared, especially since she clearly adored some pretty pillows I'd bought and placed on her "new" bed. But she starts crying when I turn off the light and put her on her bed, so I reach for her hand and hold it, lightly.

My daughter's "new" toddler bed, with a quilt sewn by her Great Aunt Judy

We lay in the dark holding hands and listening to each other breath for a few minutes. I think maybe I'm enjoying this moment too much.

You see, this is exactly the closeness I craved whenever I thought of having a daughter. Nearly my whole life, I knew that if I ever had a daughter, I would name her Gisela, after my best friend when I was five years old and living in Mexico City. I'm the one who is petrified at the thought of ever losing the kind of closeness where my daughter and I can enjoy each other's company in silence, and feel completely comfortable with each other the way we do tonight.

First day with my daughter

Yet, I see myself in her, even though she's only two years old. I know, too well, that what she is craving is independence. From the time she was a baby, she was ready to be weaned from breastfeeding earlier than her brother. And her play is daring, often rough, with many tumbles and even a broken arm suffered as a result.

My daughter has always enjoyed playing with her brother's toys

Even her brother marvels at Gisela's antics, reveling in all her craziness.

"Crazy baby," he giggles, as he kisses her.

But beneath the tough exterior, well, as tough as it can be on a two-year-old, I also see the girly girl who one day just may love to go shopping with her mama. Although she enjoys playing cars and trains with her brother, her little heart holds a lot of love for all her baby dolls, who she adoringly tucks into their crib at night, sometimes proppping open a book for them to read.

Gisela enjoys taking care of her "babies"

One thing is certain. Like her brother, she never ceases to delight and amaze me with her quick intelligence, fondness for all things musical and rapidly developing verbal skills.

Tonight, she screams out, "Mama!"

I reach out for her hand and squeeze it lightly.

A few moments pass. Her hand slips out of mine.


She reaches out again and touches my elbow, pats it and laughs contentendly. She does this again and again and again, until she is satisfied that I'm by her side.

One of Gisela's favorite dolls, a gift from her Abuela (Grandmother)



carlylennox said...

Awh, your daughter is so precious! I love your picture of her bed linen, the BlaBla pillow looks so cute! :)

Heather said...

Oh, that's so sweet! Her bed looks very cozy with all the cute pillows!
I love to hold my son when he's sleeping, and just look down on his sweet face!

Hettle said...

Such a milestone, I wonder if the moment is so much bigger for us as mothers, so hard to let go of the baby days. My children have grown far past that stage....your post brought back all those sweet times. Thank you:)

Sharyn said...

What a touching and beautiful post!

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