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“You can make anything by writing.” ― C.S. Lewis

Posts for ariadne’s first year

A Ten Month Letter to My Daughter

[previously in this series…]

I know I could get up and go put her down in her crib, have some hands-free time to read or write or at least fold laundry -- but she passed out so sweetly after a bath and eating, and Fellowship of the Rings is on TV, and I've got a footstool under my feet. After all the running around we've been doing the past few days, I can't think of anywhere else I'd rather be.

Dear Ariadne,

About a month and a half ago, you and I were at our friends the Hensels’ new house. You and I drove out to see it for the first time — you cried the whole way. I got maybe 15 minutes of fart noises and coos, and then that devolved into 20 minutes of irritated-at-still-being-in-the-carseat cry.

But — we wound down a long country road, pulled in, you calmed. Smiled at everyone, waved. We settled in for a long visit where you played with (erm near) Norah in the floor. She made up stories with your toys, she had a princess who was baking strawberry pies for you and me to sample. We ate haphazardly in that way only friends-who’ve-become-family can — sprawled out here, there, everywhere.

Man, I really love this age, your Uncle Travis said, somewhere around nine or ten months, suddenly, it’s like they’re a little person, and they can interact with you and you can figure out how to make them happy.

Nope, I said, shaking my head. Disagree. This age has been really hard for me.

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A One-Month Letter to My Daughter

[Previously in this series…]

Dear Ariadne,

I’ll try to keep this short; first because you’re currently snoozing on your Boppy and these days, those snoozes can last for hours…or only five minutes, and it’s difficult to know which each time. And secondly, because I know by the time you’re old enough to read and understand these letters, I suspect you’ll be bored or at least embarrassed by how much your mom has written about you throughout your life time, how wordy and emotional she tends to be.

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And when you’re old enough to read and understand these letters, I think you’ll be really familiar with a particular feeling that’s been coming to mind over and over again in this first month. It’s a feeling I think most teenagers and young adults feel for a good chunk of time. I remember feeling it in a variety of circumstances and intensities from college age up until maybe just the last couple of years, when it started to fade as I really truly started to feel like more of an adult and less of a kid.

It’s this feeling that we have as young adults that we want to be treated by adults. We want the older, adultier adults to recognize us as such. We are own people now, we can make our own decisions. We can choose our own paths and make our own mistakes. We don’t want to be forever tied to our parents and other family members — we love them, but we want to feel like our own person. We’re ready to cut the ties and go out into the world as individuals.

Since you’ve been born, people keep reminding me of how quickly you’re going to grow, how fast this precious infant stage is going to fade and be just a warm, pleasant memory. People keep telling me this like they’ve forgotten who they’re talking to — me, who is constantly nostalgic, constantly mourning the loss of the current zeitgeist. I am sentimental about the most mundane daily experiences, and as excited as I am for the future, I’m constantly thinking about the way things used to be, moments in the past, those little bubbles of perfection and imperfection that make up our lives.

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I know you’re going to grow, and fast. I can already tell from the way your precious little head, your big old noggin as I call right now, is getting bigger and filling out the length of my hand. I can tell from the way your cheeks have gotten a little chubbier and your beautiful belly a bit bigger. You’re still long and lean for a baby of your size, prompting your papa and I to ask where the hell you got that from, because the last thing either of us are is long or lean. But it’s a testament to how fast you’re growing — you can’t pack on the weight fast enough to get properly chubby yet, you’re just stretching out.

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