Monday, December 14, 2009

It's 5 o'clock somewhere...

When Jimmy Buffet wrote that it is 5 o'clock somewhere, he had a much warmer destination in mind than what I notice this morning. It is 5 o'clock in the morning, the temperature is minus 1 degree farenheit, and it is snowing the most beautiful large, dry snowflakes that I've seen yet this winter. I can tell that it will take at least 30 minutes to warm my car before I go to work later - and that's not for several hours yet. In fact, my alarm isn't set to go off for four more hours. But I just finished feeding Natalie and I learned very quickly that it is not a good idea to go to bed right after feeding her because inevitably, she's going to still be hungry for a little bit more just as I fall asleep.

So today I wait, still thinking that it is night, and hope that she will sleep a little bit more before waking for the day. She is getting so big and I'm wondering where the time is going. I hate to go to bed each night because I know she'll be just a little bit bigger in the morning, just a little bit older, just a little bit farther away from the newborn baby we brought home not long ago. While I look forward to all of her milestones along the way - the hugs, the "I love you"s, teaching her to read and write - I will sorely miss this beautiful creature that is a baby girl. Already I am thinking about the next baby because I want to hold on to infancy, but I am scared to think about another human being at this point. I love Natalie so much and don't want to take any time away from her. I want to devote all of my love and attention to my favorite person in the whole world. I couldn't possibly feel that way about another baby, could I?

Yet, here I sit, Natalie asleep in the other room, realizing that there will come a day when my baby girl won't be a baby any more. She will grow up and find her own family outside my home. I can't protect her forever, but I will love her eternally.

Some day, when I realize that Jimmy Buffet was right about the time, I hope that it's a warmer occasion. Perhaps then I will be sharing a Margarita with Natalie and reminiscing about her youth, watching my grandkids play in the back yard. I know I will love them just as much as I love Natalie - my heart grows larger now even thinking about these little people who won't possibly exist for many (many many many) years.

For now, I will settle for watching the snowflakes fall while I wait to be certain that my little angel is fully satisfied - that all of her needs are met this very early morning. And I will focus on each day as it comes to us, appreciating the simple fact that Natalie IS.

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