Thursday, February 10, 2011

wrappings of a present


I find myself wanting to introduce this Alice to you, the one who is so funny, so sassy, so strange, so very smart. It doesn't seem possible, that I could be surprised by this child. We spend every waking moment together. I know the roadmap of her body like it's my own.

But there is a blinding bright stripe of individuality running through her - something that is all her, all Alice.

The other day she got into the jar of ribbon I keep for her hair. Stripes and spots and plaid. Pink and red and purple and black. She gathered fistfuls of them and pulled them to her nose, smelling deep. She handed them to me saying, "They smell beautiful, mommy. So delicious." And the way she said it, bee-yoo-tee-full, like a prayer.

Downstairs later, she walked by with one remaining ribbon around her neck. It was bright aqua, winking blue in the afternoon light. She held a matching one in her hand and came to me with it, holding it out toward me. "Mommy, Hurp and I want to wear it. We want to wear the beautiful ribbon." I pulled her soft wrist into my hand, circled the small weight of it with azure blue, and tied a bow. I did the same for her stuffed buddy Hurp.

As I watched her wander the living room, the turquoise on her wrist kept drawing my eye to her arms: how quickly they moved, how she waved her hands and swam through the air like a twirling butterfly. She outshines me, she outmoves me, she outsmarts me.

Every parent in her right mind must have this bursting wonder over her child, must believe that her little girl is an incomparable sprite of whimsical sweetness. But let me just say...

She has tied that ribbon around my heart so tight. So very tight.


serenity now said...

I love this post. And that picture of Alice in the orange sweater, with an orange ring around her wrist and the pink tiara on her head--that's my favorite pic from this post. You captured the essence of the age and the child.

padua said...

"She outshines me, she outmoves me, she outsmarts me."

those of us who know you can attest there's no way this can be true.
you shine like the top of the chrysler building!

clueless but hopeful mama said...