In the early moments of sheer newborn bliss you study every inch of your baby. You count fingers and toes over and over again. You touch velvety newborn skin and silken newborn hair. You dream more concretely, in those minutes, hours, days of what you baby will be. Who she will be.
The more Gracie grows, the more she grows into herself, her personality is defining. Sure I still admire the genetics, my nose and Matt’s hair, but the idiosyncrasies are what keep my attention more today. The 101 ways she is just like me. 101 more reasons that I am ABSOLUTELY positive we brought the right pink little bundle home from the hospital.
I am sure this list will in fact grow to 101 over the years, but like the list of words, I’m starting now to watch it expand and blossom as Gracie does.
1. Her face 5.18.09
I’m starting with the most obvious. I’ve never considered myself beautiful, but I always wanted a girl with my face and Matt’s coloring or a boy with Matt’s face and my coloring/freckles. That’s what we got too, with the other best touches of Matt thrown in too. And she is unbelievably beautiful.
2. She bites her nails 5.18.09
I hate this habit, but despite all the money spent of bitter polish and fake nails, I’ve never been able to stop. Except when I was about to get married and pregnant with Grace. Go figure. It was never conscientious; I just didn’t bit for two 9 month periods in my life. I assume Grace is learning this awful habit by watching me, but I don’t even realize when I’m doing it anymore which makes it hard to stop. So Grace will be destined to live a life of stubby nails too.
3. Pickles 6.13.09
I go hot and cold with them, but given the opportunity I can sit and eat an entire jar of picked in one sitting. Hamburger dills are even better. They MUST be dills, not sweet. The other night, Grace refused to eat the hamburger and corn placed in front of her. Her eyes were fixated on the pickle jar. She ate 5 of them. Guess I’m going to have to start stocking up.
4. Stage fright 6.13.09
I have a long history of hyperventilating in front of a crowd. School plays, dance recitals, class projects, you name it and there was a frozen girl and tears at some point. My mom and high school teachers were all shocked when I picked Speech Communication/PR/Public Speaking as a major for college. Typically, I love to lead – when I’m comfortable.
When the daycare teachers announced Grace would be doing a solo during their Spring Program, I knew. She will be fine in the future, as I am 99.9% of the time now, but I knew that first time go up in flames.
5. Her walk 6.19.09
As we walked into daycare today, we were like ducks. Gracie led, I was in the middle, and her teacher was bringing up the rear. All waddling along in a semi-straight line. I heard chuckles and turned around. She said, Look at Grace’s walk! It is exactly like yours! I smiled, said thank you (I think, because is it really a good thing to walk like a 20 month old?), and started creating this list in my head.
6. Ichies 6.22.09
I am a sucker for head and back scratches. As my dad is. As Gracie now is too. The sure way to calm her down is a scalp massage and back rub. To lull her to sleep, Matt runs his fingers from her hairline, down her nose to her chin. Over and over again.
7. Tomatoes 7.20.09
Growing up, we always had a garden. I clearly remember one summer that there were so many tomatoes I would plant myself in the middle of the plants with a salt shaker and devour until I couldn't eat anymore, hardly leaving a dent. There were so many I started to realize that there was no such thing as waste, so I would bite open the fruit, suck out the tomatoes seed snot and flight the the body of the tomato to the dog. That was the summer I broke out in an allergic reaction to tomatoes because I ate way to many. Gracie seems to be following directly in my footsteps. With the daily picks coming into the house this summer she has begun to suck out the snot and discards the skins down to the dog. That's my girl.
8. Pillows 7.22.09
I cannot fall asleep without a cocoon of pillows. Two minimum. Right now, I have 5 on my side of the bed. Gracie seems to be following my footsteps with this too. She loves to pull all the throw pillows off the couch, 11 if she gathers all in the house, to make a nest and flop. She falls asleep best while laying on a king sized down pillow and is rocked. Now, she has her very first pillow in her crib and she is sleeping like a rock for the first time in ages.
If you have reasons, similarities you see between Grace and Matt or I, please leave them in the comments!