I can't believe how she grows. She now pulls herself up on anything and everything, clearly proud of herself. She crawls quickly and stands confidently and her laugh has been known to melt an entire household in mere seconds. She is becoming aware that she can *do* things and watching her do these things can keep me mesmerized for hours. Sometimes I look at her and just can't believe my eyes. She is my daughter. Holy crap.
When she was a newborn (or, as I like to say, when she was little) people would say she looked like me, or like Ron. I would sometimes gaze down at her and be amazed to see my tiny self, the one from pictures, gazing back. Every now and then she would give me a certain expression and I would startle at how it resembled my dad. All of this was fun, amazing, insanely beautiful, but it is changing now. These days, although it is clear she is my daughter, I must say that when I see her I do not see a mini-me or a half-Jamie or a small Ron. I see a Sophie. She is definitely herself, and I definitely love her with every molecule of my being.
She is also a miracle.
I can't say that I dreamed of having a baby since I was very little because that would be a lie. I wasn't that sort of child. I could not have cared less about future weddings or future families. I had something like universal vision and thought mostly of big picture stuff. I devoured books. I wanted to make poor people less poor and sick people well. I raged against military recruiters in rural schools. I hated Disney.
Don't get me wrong, I had important relationships and was far from a hermit, but I was not exactly mainstream either. My point is, I hadn't given much thought to marriage or children, except to say that I was pretty sure if I decided to enter the antiquated ritual of marriage I would keep my own name.
Ah, young ideals.
Anyway, then I settled down, fell in love, got married, all that wonderful stuff. My husband came with two beautiful daughters who I adopted as my own without hesitation. And we decided to have a child of our own. So we tried. And tried. And tried. Almost a decade later, I gave up. A hundred negative pregnancy tests later, I gave up. Tests, tears, hope and then much despair later, I gave up. And after I gave up, began to close that chapter and look to the next, I became pregnant.
Which proves that even when one loses hope, miracles can still happen. It's true. I watch one every morning as I sit sipping my coffee with a satisfied, grateful grin on my face and absolute wonderment that it could all be real.