Capturing lasts, on the other hand, can be impossible. Because often it happens without me even knowing it's happening. And sometimes, it can be a few weeks after the event happens that I realize it's probably never going to happen again. As much as I built up to Helen ditching her bottle, it wasn't until I downloaded a photo of her tipping one back on our farm trip with Grandpa Dick that it really hit me that I'm never going to have a child with a bottle again. What was once such a mainstay in our lives, always in our thoughts - because for the last year or so we had exactly one ring for that bottle, so we kept a close eye on it - is now gone. Someday, I'll even remove it from the cabinet.
On our camping trip last Spring, we went hiking, and during the hike, Helen fell asleep in Ed's arms. And it really brought me back to when she was a baby, and Ed carried her all over. Because that's the fate of Helen. Many times when she needed a nap, she just had to catch as catch can because we were busy doing things where no bed existed.
Ed and I were both cognizant of the fact that this might be the last time Helen ever passes out in his arms, both because her endurance increases daily but also because she's getting heavier, and it's hard to imagine him being able to carry her very far in that position for much longer.
Last night, Helen woke up at 11:30 and told me her stomach hurt. I held her for a few minutes, and she just couldn't get comfortable. She told me she needed to sleep in my bed, so back downstairs we went. She had already gone to the bathroom, and she didn't feel warm, so I wasn't sure what was up.
About an hour later, after tossing and turning, she asked Ed to take her upstairs and sleep with her there. They got about 5 steps outside our bedroom when she hurled all over him. Just like old times, it was. We cleaned her up, donned pair of pajamas #2 for the evening, and she told me she needed to sleep on my tummy.
This is only position she could get comfortable in when she was a baby and had terrible reflux. With a baby, it's difficult after a while. With a toddler, it's harder. But I really did love that Helen somehow found this position of comfort, refusing all others. It's not that Ed didn't help out. His role? Every couple of hours, Helen would sit up, cough, he would grab her, and run to the bathroom, and at some point during this run, she'd puke all over him.
And Helen is, by far, the happiest sick person in the world. As soon as she'd puke, she'd remark on how she was feeling better, be surprised that indeed, we had another pair of pajamas for her, and go back to sleeping on my tummy. Four outfits that little lady went through. Four.
But I didn't even mind that much, because even though my body ached in the morning, and I was wasted today when it came to thinking complex thoughts, I had one more memory of my baby sleeping right on top of me through the night. And this time, I'm remembering how comforting it is to see a small child sleep. Because I promised myself that a long time ago.
Best we can figure, she ate a bad mussel yesterday. She's been fine since early morning.