Monday, January 30, 2006
Today is my daughter's birthday
My little girl is one.
Where is my baby?
It really does freak me out a bit. Somehow, by some miracle, Li and I have gotten this little tiny baby to thrive, and grow, and survive to see her first birthday. Somehow we have done this on our own, with almost zero family help, and it shocks me, and amazes me but also makes me so damn proud of us.
When I look back on things, we were blessed with a very easygoing kid who was determined to grow faster than we were capable of reading about. I would research life with a four month old but she was acting like a six month old. So I would research life with a six month old but she would say, yipeeee and start acting like a ten month old. When I look at other ladies and their babies being babies, a part of me is a little jealous. Doesn’t last too long though, because when I look at my baby I am so damn proud.
My school teaching friends stopped calling her a baby when she reached seven months and was running around the table using only one hand for balancing. From that point on she was considered a little girl and Baby Ji decided she didn’t want to be a baby anymore. Her independence streak exploded out of her and for a little while Li and I were a little over whelmed.
We learned how to cope and have basically stopped allowing ourselves to adjust to her ways because once we do she grows to the next level and we have to adjust all over again.
In the past year Ji has learned to ride in a bicycle seat, made a million friends at daycare, has gone camping, ridden on the Shinkansen all the way to Tokyo, been up Tokyo tower, been to the bird park, petted a bird, watched fireworks, dressed in a yukata, been to numerous BBQs, started walking, started running, gone tobogganing, and had her photo taken about a million times.
Her next year is going to be even more adventurous.
In the past year her parents have second guessed themselves an few billion times, spent many sleepless nights worrying about the latest sniffle, witnessed her first independent standing, her first steps, heard her first words, cleaned up blood from her first cut lip, cried more times than can be counted and laughed many many more.
Thinking about the next year is freaking us out.
This last week I have had to let go just that little bit more of my baby and finally decided to allow her to join in her daycare’s lunch program. They provide the lunch and I of course pay for it. It costs a little bit more than if I provide a lunch for her, but it exposes her to a much wider range of foods. I will admit that my lunches for her were a tad boring.
To my surprise it was a huge personal decision for me, it was one more thing that I was relinquishing control of over my little girl and it took me a bloody month to say yes.
A WHOLE MONTH to say YES to lunch.
I had even gone so far as to ask other peoples opinions on the issue; all reminded me that it was really ok, safe, yummy and one less thing for me to worry about.
Only problem is that I did worry about it.
She has done a week of daycare lunches now. The first time she was in shock and had no idea what to do with this odd food, after that she inhaled everything and thinks daycare lunches are pretty cool.
This morning she woke up and toddled into the kitchen to get her morning hug. I gave her a wet cloth bath and changed her into her day clothes. She watched Baby Einstein and clapped along in all the right parts, totally oblivious that today was her birthday. We have had numerous phone calls and emails wishing her a happy birthday, as well as a few presents and lots of love.
Tonight we are going to do a family dinner, I am going to pick up a little cake, light her first candle and take a zillion pictures.
So stay tuned for tons of pics to come.