theodore will be five months old on the 30th. i keep saying he’s four months, but i know it’s inching towards five and it’s making feel so… nostalgic. how can i miss a phase we were in just days ago? but i do.i miss his scrawny little legs, and his funny “craugh” face: is he crying or laughing? (definitely more “cry” in this shot!)

how did he go from that to this in just… days? (yes, that is a gourd. emma that is was an appropriate prop.)

tonite emma wanted me to rock her to sleep. and of course i jumped at the chance. she doesn’t want to cuddle as much any more, being as independent and precocious as she is. she will be five on her next birthday. FIVE. that is monumental. she’ll be a full fledged kid, with no hint of baby left. there really are no hints of baby or toddler anymore, but i can’t even lie to myself when she hits that milestone.

and violette, my sweet and shy little fairy. my friend vanessa captured violette’s personality so well the other day: she is almost always near me and she takes quite a while to warm up. yet, i see these glimpses of her courage gathering, and her daring to venture. irony is triumphant, though. when we’re home, she is most likely to be playing in her room, with her dollhouse or legos, entertaining herself for hours. only needing me to “make a sandwich, mama, it’s peanut butter-chili* time” and “help! wipe my butt, cos i pooped a big one.” *the other day, i was making chili, and she was so concerned as to why i was chopping onions and getting out cans of beans. i told her i was cooking chili, and she went to the fridge and got out the grape jelly and said “mama! chili’s right here!”

one of their favorite things to do right now is look at slideshows of my pictures on flickr, the other day a picture of vi came up, from before her surgery. she got very skittish and said she was scared. i asked her if she wanted to me go to the next photo, or if she wanted to talk about it, but she leaned in closer, studying her lip and asked how it got cut. i explained she was born with a cleft lip and she told me that was silly, and she just “cut it while she was playing” and mama milk fixed it. it made my heart explode, but then i was gripped with this anxiety. how will this affect her? i want her to know without a doubt that she is a beautiful, whole person, and that a scar doesn’t matter. but will it?oh, i worry.

and i worry about many other things, will theodore feel left out? emma and violette are so close in age, and he trails by nearly 3 years. and emma is so bossy sometimes! i know her intentions, but she can be perceived so harshly by other kids (and parents!) sometimes. she is so much like me, yet so different. she has a confidence i never had to back up the sassiness. i wonder if we’ve done the right thing, is it fair to them to homeschool? to live this artsy, bohemian lifestyle we’ve got, where creativity trumps schedules & inspiration matters far more than routine? what about religion & spirituality? they know about jesus, and that mama & daddy believe in god, but they always know we read books on sufis and buddha. i have a hard time telling them that one particular thing is true.

the most important thing, though, is that i’m completely honest in my intentions, words and actions. and who can see my inconsistencies more than my children, who i am around 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

i am not perfect, and i don’t attempt to be. so i can’t figure out why am i so incredibly hung up on these unattainable standards? who has set this ideal that mother’s are supposed to have a spotless designer home, with little angels sitting at the kitchen table in shiny catalog clothing, happily doing some craft project, while home made cookies are baking in the oven and mommy doesn’t have a speck of flour on her apron (or the kitchen floor!)

oh, i don’t know. i do know that it’s 2 am and mr. teddy will be needing to nurse pretty soon, therefore i’m off to bed.


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