Okay, I’m really late with this post. Harley turned 3 on the 1st of December, but I’m sure she won’t mind that I’m only writing this now. It’s been a busy period. We did Thanksgiving and her birthday party, all with Dean’s mom visiting us. It was lots of fun, but also super hectic, and when combined with work deadlines, I just haven’t really had a chance to sit down and reflect and write. But now, I’m carving out the time to tell you all about Harley, the amazing 3-year-old.
Harley is now a two-year-old. I honestly can’t even wrap my head around it. I mean, I can, but I can’t. On the one hand, I look at old pictures of my little monkey and I hardly even recognize that squishy face. She has lengthened and grown and become a real little girl, capable of so much more than I ever thought a two-year-old could do. On the other hand, she is still my baby, my tiny human who seems to take up a huge amount of space in my heart and my home compared to her size.
Harley turned two a couple weeks back, and I kept promising myself that I would write about it. There isn’t much to write about the day itself because we don’t know many people here and decided against trying to do any kind of big shindig. Instead, her school had a small celebration for her with cupcakes I sent in, we gave her a whole bunch of presents from us and her South African grandparents (more on that soon) and saw my mom the next day to celebrate together (and give her even MORE presents) over sushi and soup thanks to the plague Harley gave all of us from starting a new school.
Today, my tiny little preemie princess turns one. ONE! How has a whole year gone by already? How is it already her 1st birthday?! It’s that usual conundrum of time moving so quickly when we look back, and yet feeling like it was standing still at times. Those first few months were so slow, so hard. She seemed to be in the hospital for ages, needing time to grow and become ready for the world. Then we got her home, and that was a whole new kind of hard. The days and weeks blurred together like a weird exhaustion-induced fever dream. And all of a sudden I’ve woken up and my little baby, my tiny princess is a year old.
I had so many plans for this post, for all the words that I wanted to write about Harley, about how far she has come, about what this year has been like. And yet, I’m finding myself just sitting here, listening to her breathe while she sleeps on my chest, feeling the weight of her tiny body against mine. This is the new normal, this is my life now – I am the safe place for a tiny person. I am her mommy and she is my baby and that is our life. Until she wakes up, of course, and then I become her jungle gym, food court and general entertainment system.
Today is my birthday. As of 7:30pm, I will have been on this planet for 31 years. It’s an odd birthday though.
Usually, I love for everyone to make a big fuss. I love to be well wished or congratulated by anyone and everyone, and I really enjoy big celebrations. I like to go out for a nice dinner and be made to feel super special on the day. It’s not so much about presents as it is about marking the day. And yet this year, it all feels a bit different, and my requests for celebrations are unlike what I’ve ever wanted.