Monica Bielanko
That's What She Said
Just A Junk Drawer Dream
You can also find Monica's writing here:
« Office Space | Main | He Just Calls 'Em Like He Sees 'Em »

Newsletter: Month Four

Dear Violet,

Oh my. Little girl, I never thought my heart could be so full. I just love you so much it hurts to contemplate. When you sleep, I miss you. When I wake you up you grin at me like its the Second Coming and I'm Jesus Christ himself, come to fly you to the clouds forever and ever. Amen.

This month you've grown more than any other month. You went from a tiny little wombat to a full-fledged baby with deliciously chunky thighs and gummy grins. You're talking, very nearly laughing and my heart leaps like it never has, even during my very first crushes at Orem Junior High School. That beautiful skater boy Dave Tate with the long, floppy bangs that covered one eye just so has nothing on you, little miss.

If I had to sum up this month in a few words I'd call it Daddy's month. Your Papa is at his best when he's with you. I daresay you can request a brand new Porsche for your fifth birthday and you'll get it. He may serve 5-to-10 for auto theft, but you'll have the damn Porsche. Every day he saddles up the dogs secures you in the bjorn and y'all head down to Dog Canyon for a looksee at the wildlife and such.

This month you've grown so much! I've had to box up all of your earliest clothing because it just doesn't fit anymore. I nearly shed tears at the prospect of going up a diaper size. My little peanut graduated from a Pampers 1 to a 2! And just the other day I fed you your first bite of rice cereal. You weren't sure what to do with it, just let a big glob of it perch on your lip like a bird on a wire. I'd look at you and laugh and you'd grin right back like a comedian whose bit has gone over well with the audience, pink gums decorated with drippy rice cereal. Reminded me of the years I spent working at a retirement home. But nicer, of course. Rice cereal dripping from infant gums is infinitely better than rice cereal dripping from 90-year-old gums.

At the beginning of the month GranElaine promised us that you held a rattle while you were with her so we decided to see for ourselves if this talk of rattle holding and oh my gosh, rattle waving, was true. What do you know? You grabbed hold of the sucker and swung it around like you were a back-up tambourine player for Bob Dylan.

You're also realizing that your jumparoo is, like, totally awesome! Today you were binging and boinging around in there like an Olympic gymnast in training all the while babbling and gasping at the awesomeness of your own theatrical feats

This month I celebrated my very first Mother's Day. Until now I never thought much about Mother's Day. Of course, it's a day to call my own Mom and wish her a happy Mother's Day but I never really thought about how special it truly is. How it means I get to be your mother forever and I'll mark Mother's Day forever because of you. Also because of you I feel differently about my own Mama now. I can't believe that she could possibly love me as much as I love you. I mean, look at me, I'm this big, ornery asshole now. Maybe when I was a baby she almost loved me as much as I love you but not now. She insists she does and my heart hurts in the nicest way to think about how she held me just like I hold you now and whisper how I love you so much my heart just might explode directly out of my chest.

On Mother's Day we just hung around the house as a family. I brought you out on the porch so we could watch Pop plant his beloved veggie and herb garden and you just chilled, nakie baby in Mama's arms.

You're starting to sit up all by yourself. We can prop you up on the couch and you'll stay there for a bit, eyes wide, intently watching the latest episode of Cold Case Files and likely solving the crime because of course you are a genius and no baby can possibly compare to the brilliance that is you. Eventually you tip over like a drunk, old man who's had one too many and can support himself no longer. You'll stay there quietly, face down on the couch like, a little help please, until I set you right.

You are no longer sleeping in our bedroom. Most nights Dad puts you to sleep in your crib but sometimes you crash in your swing in the living room. This is my favorite because then I have an excuse to pick you up when I get home from work and love on you while ever-so-delicately transferring you back to your crib.

The other night I was doing this very thing but instead of rolling onto your left side and dozing off in your crib you held my hand and stared at me as if to say I'm on to you lady and you aren't going anywhere until I am well good and sleeping. Usually, if awake at all during this process you stare at your mobile but this time you eyeballed me for a good fifteen minutes before I was able to sneak out of the room.

You really love to sleep on your left side. Every day right before I leave for work you get awfully tired and become a little fussy. The minute I turn you on your left side, you're out like a light. It backfires though. One time you were in your crib and while laying on your left side, walked yourself in a circle until your face was planted squarely against the bumper. That freaked me out and I spent the rest of the night waking every fifteen minutes to see if you were still breathing and hadn't managed to wedge yourself in some ungodly crib position..

The engines are a go in that tiny brain of yours. You're starting to realize the connections of things. For instance; if I say bink? you open your mouth like a little goldfish so I can pop it in. If I hold the rattle out you put out your hand to grab it. If I laugh you grin right back at me as if I hold the keys to the universe. I don't, but I'll steal every goddamn one of them and unlock as many doors for you as I possibly can. Or die trying.

My favorite moments with you are still in the morning. You wake up at 6am or so and Pop brings you out into the living room to hang out with him until he leaves for work at 8. You immediately begin to talk and talk and talk until I wake up and stagger in there to retrieve you. The minute your head hits the pillow next to mine you're out. We lay there together for another hour or so... dozing in and out of sleep, breathing each other's breaths.

Today we made a pact that we'd be best friends forever, even when you're a teenager and hate my guts and wish me dead. I said, okay Violet, I'm pulling the binky out of your mouth now and if you smile, it's a deal. I pulled the binky out of your mouth and guess what?

You smiled. It's a deal.