Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Nora Today

My little Nora is a creature of habit.

Each day when the sun is peeking through the eastern treeline, I carefully open Nora's bedroom door. With a freshly popped waffle in hand, my first step is to open her blinds and let the light find mounds of toys and discarded dresses. I peer into the crib that holds four fake babies and one real one. When the smile spreads across her face and her blanket covers the rest of it, I know it's showtime.

"Is there a little princess in here??" I ask. "I could have sworn I left a princess in this bed last night. Penguin, where did she go? Naked Baby, have you seen her?!"

I've had years of practice so I lay it on thick until Nora jumps out of hiding. Then it's clean diaper, breakfast, and a big morning kiss. If you know my daughter, you'll know she doesn't settle for any peck on the cheek.

I've only been the mother of a daughter for a couple of years now, but we are finding a groove. Lord knows I'm in for hairpin turns and drops that will leave us hanging on for dear life, but I really like where we are now. Knowing that can change in a moment's notice, I thought I'd document Nora today.

Sure, there are hourlong crying spells and arguments where neither hardheaded girl will back down, but when she grabs my hand on the couch and asks if I know who her best friend is, my heart has a way of melting. She likes to put on her shoes by herself, but asks me to help with her bow. She'll stand in front of the living room TV belting out a 24-letter version of the alphabet with her eyes fixed on my hands, waiting for applause. She asks what's wrong if I'm upset. She kisses me when I least expect it. She lives in pajamas, craves puffy Cheetos, and is obsessed with the color pink. She fawns over the tiny pea and strawberry plants in her garden and leads me to check on them daily. She sees things in me I don't see in myself. We continue to complement each other in new ways.

I have written about what I want for Nora in the future, but Nora right now has it together. The superhero stage is quick, though, and I remind myself often not to miss it. Unless fate has something else in mind, Nora's boo-boos will be the last ones I can kiss away. Two will soon be three and three jumps to eight. I have to keep my eyes open.

When the day is done and the sun slips behind the oaks and pines that lie to the west, Nora notices. "The sun is gone!" she'll announce and begin to bribe us for more time. Eventually she zeroes in for a right-on-the-lips kiss. She'll hold our heads in her small hands and kiss us like she means it. She does. Once she's tucked from neck to toe, she shouts goodnight to all four of us and awaits reply. Satisfied and safe, she curls up and drifts away.

Nora brings so much to my day from the moment those blue eyes first blink into the sunlight. She's growing up, and I want to see all I can.

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Grace Grits and Gardening said...

I love this sweet post. Thanks for sharing. It brought back memories of those precious times with my little ones who no longer are but in a way, always will be.

Talya's Mom said...

I really enjoyed this sweet post. It really took me back to when my girls were this wonderful age. Do keep your eyes wide open, because it goes by too, too fast.

Jessica Bauer said...

Thank you both so much! And that means a lot coming from you, Talya. :)