Sunday, April 06, 2008

Beff is turning free!

Beth turns three today, and I'm not ready for it. I have the kitchen table piled high with presents (it's Potter family tradition to celebrate birthdays as early in the morning as possible), and we're well into the planning of the butterfly birthday party next weekend, and she's itching to be finally three instead of having her birthday "coming up in April," but I'm just not ready. I'm feeling nostalgic (and, yes, a bit weepy. Sniff!).

Three years ago right now I was in the hospital with a magnesium solution IV, a headache, and an automatic blood pressure cuff so I could only sleep in 15-minute increments. I was scared, tired, and majorly pissed off because the baby wasn't due until May 10th and I'd just left a bunch of things hanging at work. When Beth was finally born (emergency C-section, five weeks early, at 4:08 in the afternoon) she was itty bitty: 4 lbs., 10 oz. Here's the mildly famous shoe picture for reference.

And now she's a Big Girl who goes on the potty (most of the time), talks up a storm, knows her ABCs and loves to figure out which words begin with which letters ("What does cookie begin with? Cuh-cuh-cuh-C! Oh, I did it!"), and is sweet to her little sister (again, most of the time, and there's nothing sweeter or more maternally satisfying than seeing her take Sarah's hand to help her go throw away a diaper). She's also a drama queen of some note (I think it goes with the age, and the fact that she's female and related to me), bossy, opinionated, defiant (daily), and, on occasion, even manipulative and sneaky.

I miss my tiny skinny little Bug. I love my big girl Beff. I miss the freedom I had when I was kidless (Road trip without worrying about someone puking in the car? Sure! Three-hour trip to the mall, trying on every green sweater, knowing that everyone with me will behave? Why not?), and I love her snuggling up with me on the couch to watch the Food Network (we're both big Ace of Cakes fans, which I fear has greatly inflated her faith in my ability to adequately decorate her butterfly birthday cake). I miss the little mewing noises she made as a newborn, and I love her soft little grown-up-sounding voice from the back seat of the car telling me that her imaginary friend Mei is strapped in the car seat with her. I loved being the center of her world, and I love that her world is expanding beyond me.

While I'm thinking about birthdays: congrats to Danika and Amy, who both had baby girls this week! If the first part of this post didn't make it clear, I'm just a wee bit partial to baby girls...and the big girls they eventually become. Happy birthday, Bethie.


Sarah Kay said...

I can't believe it either. Wow, where does the time go? I'm the same way though, walking out of the movie theater the other day, having watched the entirety of Horton without distraction, I felt this new energy of being a mom to a bigger girl, but there are times when I want the 5 lb snugglebug on my shoulder, just to be there. I guess you could say I'm mildly baby hungry again, but it will have to wait until I know for sure I have health insurance.

Jen said...

Hooray, happy birthday Beth! Rats, I was wavering between the butterfly and the flower version of the present I sent, and went with the flower. Oh well, it still sort of fits the theme. :)

I bet it doesn't feel to her like the time is going by quickly. You're giving her a wonderful childhood, and that's all she knows or cares about right now. Happy Bethday to all -- can't wait to see pictures of the party!

Brooke said...

Beth has an imaginary friend? That's so cool!

We have a card/present in the works, but it probably won't come until . . . um next week. (April 20?)

The way I see it, is: Beth's birthday was SUPPOSED to be May 10, so I have until that date to get a gift sent out, right? Like the year you have to send out wedding present thank-you notes.

Jessie said...

I can't believe it either! 3! Give her a belated birthday kiss for me! I love that shoe pic:)

Stacee Maree said...

Wow I thouht that baby by the shoe was a doll for Beths birthday. I guess I should have read before my thoughts jumped away with me. Tinnie Tiny. Cora was four weeks early and was 6 lbs. 3 oz. why do I have to have such big babies?

Rebecca said...

Happy Birthday Beth!! What a sweet's so hard to let them grow up!