I’ve reached this neat stage as a mom, and I was thinking this morning that I could liken it to the Mamma bear and her bear cubs. I’ll try describe what I mean.
Well, for one, Alex is such a little adventurer now. Running, unsteadily, straight (and sideways), tumbling towards whatever adventure she can find; at moments, completely without fear. Then, suddenly, full stop and all of a sudden, it occurs to her…”Where is my Mommy?” and the head whips around, desperately seeking to find me. Then begins the long, urgent run back into Mommy’s arms. Sometimes, there’s a trip, a fall, and Mommy rushes to baby bear’s side. Ultimately, though, Mommy bear watches the adventures unfold, and then waits for that moment, always imminent, when she is again needed.
But wait…there’s another little cub moving around, exploring. Though, as adventurous as her sister is, she moves around in fine circles. Exploring what the blades of grass do when she runs her fingers through it. Holding a flower up for a smell, before carefully dismantling it. Looking up and smiling that joyful smile at Momma bear, secure that she is right there beside her. Mommy is perpetually encouraging and reassuring. Hailey can be surprising though. Strong, willful and grappling with her new independence while remaining steadfast in her proximity to Mommy. This little bear can be unpredictable. You see, little bear H adores SPEED. She may not be walking yet, and every little thing can scare her, but in strange ways, she can be reckless in her abandon. Take, for example, her zebra. She goes like SNOT on that thing. She will careen wildly toward the bush or curb or especially down a hill with no regard for whether Mommy is there to keep her safe. Who cares? This is FUN! Momma bear must run to keep up and save little bear H from certain boo boos (all the while, of course, keeping a watchful eye on the venturing baby bear A).
It’s a time of bemusement, laughter, and a modicum of freedom for Momma bear, but it’s also a massive challenge, and that feeling that there’s no letting go is omnipresent, whether one or both are clinging to me or not. It’s a wonderful time. It’s a frustrating time. But mostly, it’s a very very special time, and I love exploring the world right there with them.