We set up the toddler bed this weekend. I’m not sure how I feel about that. The Man kind of took the ball and ran with the idea, and I pretty much stood there, like in one of those dreams where you’re trying to run, but your legs won’t move. Knowing it is the right thing, but knowing what it means…the baby is gone. The last baby is gone.
(Of course the last time I thought that, I gave all the baby stuff away and promptly became pregnant.)
But really this time, the last baby is gone. Really.
So we have a toddler bed now. And bedtime with Ella? It’s always interesting.
We read books together.
We kiss. And kiss. And kiss.
And then I say good night, and close the door.
After a couple minutes, the door handle rattles…she tries to open her door. It’s late. I’m exhausted.
So now, admittedly a teensy bit annoyed at her blatant disregard for the stay-in-your-bed rule, I open her door intent on plopping her right back in bed.
I see her dolls–all of them nude and lined up on the chair.
Her socks lay in a crumpled mess on the floor. As does her diaper. And her jammies.
And then I see her, behind the door. Completely naked.
“Ello” she says, and then she bursts through the door and streaks down the hall, laughing and screeching and smacking her buns.
Our laughter does nothing to discourage her, I’m sure.
I pick her up, and scold her gently for getting out of her bed. I put on her ladybug jammies and the Hokie jersey that she simply insists on wearing to bed tonight (I can’t say I blame her–did you see that come-from-behind win against Nebraska?). And some striped socks. She’s two. She has some very definite opinions on fashion. And they’re questionable, imho. But whatever, it looks cute on two.
She settles into my shoulder, and we stand there, rocking back and forth. Moments like these are fleeting, I know.
“It’s time to sleep now, Ella” I tell her.
“Oh” she says.
“No more getting out of bed.”
“Ella, you’re my baby.”
“You’ll always be my baby.”
“I love you, Ella.”
Good night baby girl.