She sits turning her toy, a little giraffe, in her hands. The toy has her rapt attention. Her mind is alight with questions and probabilities and this reflects in her deep, dark eyes. Her rosebud lips pout ever so gently as she concentrates on the little thing. When she manages to twist its tail with a tat-tat sound, her lips begin to curl into a smile. It is then that she notices me, sitting by her, watching her, falling in love with her with each passing second. As soon as that realization hits her, she discards her toy, lets out a shriek of joy, crawls towards me as fast as her little knees would take her and engulfs me in one of her characteristic hugs with her head resting on the crook of my neck as her little hands hold on tight to my shoulders.
My Gini. My baby girl. I breathe in her smell and I am filled with awe and wonder for she has filled my life with grace and love like never before. I look at her and think, I made her. Almost immediately, another thought fleets across my mind: she made me. She made me tender enough to hold her, patient enough to understand her, strong enough to plod through the numerous hard times that assault us every now and then. There is innocence in those eyes framed by a heavy curtain of lashes but there is wisdom too. The wisdom of a knowing, loving soul.
With each passing day, she grows into her name (which means sweetness). In only a year, she has come a long way, working hard at growing up. As she learns to form different sounds, she looks at me for support and approval. Sometimes, an unexpected word erupts from her mouth, delighting and scaring her all at once. She looks at me with raised eyebrows and then dissolves into giggles at this amazing, new discovery. The discovery of her voice has indeed been momentous. Gone are the days when she had to rely solely on her cries to convey her myriad emotions.
Then there are her hands. They too have learnt to wield her fingers at will, picking big and small things with equal ease. Her legs have gained in strength and now carry her bravely into the big, unknown world. But perhaps the most poignant of all has been the growth in her personality. Her sweet, understanding nature doesn’t shy away from pranks every now and then but also knows how to melt her mummy’s heart.
She maybe small but she is the biggest, most important presence in our lives. She may have been with us for only a year but she has already given me joys of a lifetime. My darling daughter, I am blessed to be your mummy. I love you, forever.