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Monday, July 20, 2009

What a Week

Last week Clint (the hubs), Amelia (the babe), and myself packed up and headed to Pensacola, Florida for our first official family vacation. Nobody told me that once you become a mom, "vacations" are a thing of the past. Well, actually, they did, but I refused to listen. We had a great time... I just wasn't prepared to need a vacation from my vacation! It was a whirlwind of a week, and it flew by faster than did the month of June. Our girl was a one (tiny) woman comedy show. She went from barely walking to almost running. She adopted a new love... her Cabbage Patch baby, and with that came her new ability to say "baby!" in that high pitched excited tone that only a newbie can reach (pronounced Bah-bee!) Speaking of speaking, I'd guess she added no less than 4 words to her budding vocabulary. Bird (bir), PawPaw!, SpongeBob (Spo-Bah), and NO! (accompanied by a vigorous head shake) are the ones that come to mind, and there are several others she's working on. When asked where someone was, she'd look around the room and either make eye contact or point them out. Keep in mind that there were 15 or so other family members on this trip with us. My big girl also went on her first boat ride was fascinated by the dolphins diving around us. I, however, was in mom panic mode at the thought of having my baby on a boat in the middle of the ocean. Once the initial panic started to subside, it was amazing to watch her discover everything around her. She was so excited to watch the birds and other boats buzz by. She even got to be the Captain and drive the boat for a few minutes!
The greatest surprise of the trip was that my girl was scared and completely freaked out by the beach! The first morning we were there, Clint and I spent nearly an hour laboring over her and ourselves, covering her from head to toe with sunblock, dressing her in SPF an onsie swimsuit, locating all the possible necessary supplies (rum and diet coke being one of them) and heading down to the Texas Flag tent, aka, the family's staked-out section of the beach. We were so excited to see her reaction. Amelia, however, had other thoughts. She wanted nothing to do with the sand. We tried to stand her in it and she'd lift up her legs and refuse to be put down. A fuss unlike any other warned us of further punishment should we try to proceed with the sand shenanigans. We tried sitting her down on her bottom and it was even worse. She'd sit and pick her feet up and just hold them in the air. The fuss would return. This pose is no easy feat to pull off. I attempt a similar one in pilates each week and it nearly kills me. She must have REALLY hated the sand to sit there like that. Back to the condo Millie and I head. The vacation is over for the afternoon. Day after day, we go through the same circus of getting ready and promptly heading back to the safety of the condo. I'd be lying if I said I was more than bummed that my little darling didn't immediately love the beach the way I passionately do.
Finally, on Friday (our last day on the beach) we decide to give it one last shot. Initially, the outlook wasn't so good. We started with the same sand sitting ordeal. Clint decides to try and walk her out into the surf. A little fuss ensues, but nothing we can't deal with. We ease her along, and then, suddenly, something clicks! She starts laughing as the tiny waves crash around her tiny feet. We hold her in her knee high water and she "jumps" the waves with our hands firmly around her. More giggling! She couldn't get enough. We then take one last stab at the whole sand thing, and low and behold, she loves it also! She's practically running up and down the beach, in and out of the surf. I cried a little. I was so proud of her overcoming her fear. She's so brave. My only regret is that we didn't have a few more days on the beach to let her play.
Everyone tells you that babies grow up way to fast, and that you should cherish every minute. That is the understatement of the year. Just in the span of a week, my angel baby went from my loving little baby to my brave, fearless biiiiiiiig girrrrrrl! I have such mixed feelings about all of this. I am thrilled and amazed that my daughter is growing up to be such a "Fun Fearless Female," as Cosmo would say (just don't tell her dad I said that!). I am also close to tears at every milestone she reaches, big or small. I guess its just part of the joys of motherhood. The mixed emotions are another thing no one tells you about (or another thing I chose not to listen to).
Relaxing, rejuvenating beach vacation? Not so much. Eye opening, thrilling, life changing week? Absolutely.