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victorian baby bed

Two weeks ago, I took Baby for her two-year visit at the Pediatrician. I brought Toddler too so she could get her flu vaccine. I was amazed at how differently my girls acted while there. Toddler was utterly unfazed by her surroundings. When the nurse sidled up with a big needle, Toddler did not blink. She was simply psyched that she would receive prizes: a rubber bracelet thingy, stickers, and a lollipop.

Baby, on the other hand, clung to me the moment we walked in the doctor's office and welled up with tears anytime a nurse or doctor approached. She screamed when given her shots and prizes did little to distract her.

Fine. They are different kids.

I had a nice time talking with our Pediatrician. We talked about the increasingly-obvious fact that I am pregnant with my third girl. We discussed changes that should ideally take place before the new baby arrives this spring. She suggested that we start to casually approach the idea of potty training. She recommended that we move Baby to a big bed in a couple of months, around the new year. After a successful transition there, we should tackle the issue of pacifiers. Baby still loves her "poppy" and uses it for every night and nap.

I left the appointment feeling empowered to know that my kids are healthy and that I have a plan for the months ahead. Things to aim for. Things to try.

But then. Three days ago, Baby reminded me of something: This is not all up to us. She told Nanny she wanted to take a nap in her big-girl bed. And she did. She slept for two hours. And that night? She slept in that bed again. It has been days now. She has fully graduated to her big bed. Now? There is an empty white crib in the corner of the purple room.

And I know I shouldn't be, but I'm a bit sad. That she is no longer curling up in that white crib where she slept the very night she came home from the hospital and every night since. That she is getting so big and so fast.

But sad isn't it. I'm also amazed. That we can plot and plan our parental courses, aided by the very wisest of well-wishing experts, but that things will happen the way they happen. One day, things change. Just like that. And the changes are little, but they are also big.

And I am proud, too. Of course I am. I have created a little being with a mind of her own. A little being who said enough is enough. A little being who climbs out of her big bed early in the morning and pulls the little yellow step-stool over to her sister's bed so she can climb up.

We found them this morning in bed together reading a story about pirates.

And I am comforted by this image, this image of closeness, of companionship, of sisterhood. I am also comforted by the little creature inside me, tiny but growing. The little creature who kicks me now after a few pieces of Halloween candy. The little creature who will soon sleep in a certain white crib.

{One question for all you experts out there: What happens when there are no more babies to pop in that crib? What then?}

Baby, I'm so so proud of you. But if you promise to stop growing up so fast, I'll let you keep your poppy until you go to college.

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In this world, do you think control is a fallacy? Have you been at once saddened and heartened by moments of transition or evolution? Have you ever experienced a simultaneous desire to stop time and speed it up? Any experience with Empty Crib Syndrome? When did your wee ones graduate to big beds?

So Embarrassing

My Clearest Thoughts