To my daughter,

YOU CAN WALK!!! And it’s about time, my love.  Because even though I know it’s totally fine that you didn’t truly walk until you were fourteen months old and you didn’t regard it as your preferred method of transportation until like two weeks ago, I was still a little concerned.  It seemed like everyone was running all over the place, and you were content to crawl.  Was it because you’re my first and I love your face and I pick you up and snuggle you at every available opportunity?

Mowing the lawn has never looked happier.

Either way – HA!  You showed me.  You started taking your tentative first steps a while ago, but now you literally run amuck.  Your fat little legs can move you from one side of the back deck to the other in record time.  You do laps around the patio table.  You want to climb the stairs and chase the kitties and push your toy lawnmower and you definitely want to point your fingers in the air while you walk and yell “YAY!!!!”  (The fingers-in-the-air thing makes me laugh out loud, because you look like a high speed disco queen.)  And while I may regret saying this, I’m so glad you’re walking.  Mainly because it shows that you’re growing up, but also because you look so silly standing up and toddling around because you are so damn twerpy.

You have changed so much in the last few weeks that it’s starting to make me nervous.  (I checked your back for a “pause” button, but haven’t found it yet.)  It’s cool though because we can actually PLAY.  Last week, we swapped out your little baby car seat for the Big Girl car seat, and conveniently, the box transformed swiftly and easily into a spaceship.  You crawled right inside the thing and tolerated my silliness while we pretended to travel through space, with Space Siah right outside of the ship’s window.

Flying our cardboard spaceship through space, time, and cats.

Your vocabulary is coming along, but in entertaining patches.  We’re way past “kitty” now, and have moved on swiftly to “cow,” “duck,” and “snack.”  (These words are not necessarily related.)  Your babbling is taking on a very conversational tone, and when you “read” your books out loud to me, it almost sounds correct.  When I ask you what the cow says, you reply confidently with “moooo … oon?”  A piggy says “nuff nuff” and sometimes also “piggy.”  Bunnies say “rabbit, rabbit.”  Actually, many animals say their own names in our house, which may lead to some confusion in the future.  But for now, it is fun to watch you giggle when I pound my chest and yell “Go-rill-a!!”

However, what makes me laugh the most is what I hear in your babbling.  Oftentimes, you just toddle around mumbling “Dumbledore,” which makes me wonder how much Harry Potter I read while pregnant.  “Chris, I swear she is saying ‘Dumbledore.'”  And your daddy laughed at me, until we were in the car last night and he heard you from the backseat musing quietly about “Dumbledore, Dumbledore.”  I rest my case.

And that hair.  Oh Birdy, I know that your auntie has curly hair and that your great-Grammie had curly hair, but seriously, yours is out of control.  In the morning, when your mom and dad rescue you from your crib, your hair makes you look six inches taller than you actually are.  Daddy calls you “tornado head,” and he’s totally right.  It doesn’t help that you are fast becoming Linus with your blanket, dragging that knitted, cotton lovey around with you and occasionally rubbing your face into it, thus teasing your brown curls into complete chaos.  Kid, I wish my hair had that kind of volume.   

To me, you are the prettiest little brown-eyed girl I’ve ever seen.  But clearly, you look nothing like me.  I am okay with this, because you look just like your adorable daddy.  Just not like me.  And this was confirmed by the woman at the grocery store a few weeks ago who asked me if I did domestic adoption.  “No, she’s my biological daughter.”  Awkward pause.  “But … thank you?”  (What do you say to that?)  Regardless of who you look like or where you came from, I think you’re awesome.

Fifteen months already.  Damn girl, you need to slow down and let me catch up with all this change.  You are leaving the baby version of yourself behind and are turning into my little girl right before my eyes. 

Faster than you can babble “Dumbledore.”