Home Base. That’s what I am to you right now. Gone are the baby days of long snuggles and extended nursing sessions. Here are the days where you NEED to move. All the time. Confinement is death in your little emotional world. You tolerate being trapped in your high chair as long as the food is fast in coming. You tolerate being strapped into your car seat as long as the car is moving and providing you with passing scenery to hold your attention. . .well, most of the time. If you’re feeling icky, you want me to hold you for longer periods as long as I’m doing something interesting. But mostly, you want to move. To explore. To touch, to smell, to taste, to smash, to run. And watching you amazes me every day. For the most part, you move from thing to thing with a speed that is almost astonishing. But occasionally something grabs your attention and provides opportunity for a baby-sized science experiment and you stay in one place for a while. That’s fun to watch, too.
So now, instead of wanting me right beside you all the time, you want me nearby as long as I’m not cramping your style. You tell me “no” when I get too close to whatever it is you’re exploring. But if I leave the room, you come to find me. Now and then, you leave your project, fly into my legs and give me a hug. . .or reach for me to pick you up, get a quick squeeze and immediately demand to be put down to continue on your way. Your newfound independence is both fun to watch and a little sad. I miss your baby snuggles, but I’m honored to be the safe, quick hug that makes you feel safe to keep on moving. Watching you figure out your world is a lot like the way I feel like I’ve started to figure out my own. I’m starting to get comfortable in my own skin, and to be comfortable being my own home base as well as one for you and your sisters.
So here’s hoping that as you move into this new toddler realm, I do an even better job helping you with your emotions than I did your sisters. Because doing better with what we know is always right, and sticking with a method of parenting because it’s how we’ve “always done it” never is. Thank you for trusting me to be your home base. I’ll keep working to be worthy of that trust. Because you’re worth it.