It's true, loyal readers. By the time this is posted, it will certainly be well after midnight, which puts us at September 7th. The cannons will roar and the champagne will flow and the people will dance merrily, celebrating the fact that exactly one year ago, a blog was born. Or, I'll drink some tap water, take the dogs out one last time and sleep the sleep of a man who hopes his daughter stays in dreamland until at least late morning. Hard to believe I don't have my own reality show.
Back to this obviously monumental event and the self-congratulating portion of the program. In an effort to avoid spending hours on the phone updating loved ones on Emily's progress, I put together this page which has now spread, literally, worldwide. (I see you Brazil, England, South Africa, and Australia...thanks for stopping by!) Whenever I sit down to write, if I'm not deep in some absurdly self-absorbed funk, I am primarily thinking of those closest to me and their desire to keep up with our kid. I suppose I never considered the fact that I might be able to have an impact on other people who share these experiences. I hope you are all getting something out of it. If not, well...uh...I don't know what to tell you. This is all I got.
Since I'm almost positive none of you are here to listen to me high-five myself, I suppose I could spend some time on our soon-to-be-13-month old. Emily continues to develop in leaps and bounds. Many of you have already seen the video below with her strolling across the family room...aided by her trusty cart. She doesn't do it a lot, as it's faster and easier for her to crawl, but she does it just enough to let us know she's got it in the arsenal. Because of the eight cm discrepancy, she tends to push the cart by "walking" with her short leg and "crawling" on the knee of her longer leg. Whatever mode she chooses, she is very, very mobile...which includes climbing stairs, pulling herself up on couches and tables...basically whereverthehell she feels like going. The only thing holding her back is a desire to avoid any trips to the ER by her parents.
Which brings us to another development. Emily has clearly begun to assert her independence. Gone is mellow, sweet, go-with-the-flow Emily. While she is still just a handful of sunshine the majority of the time, she has no problem letting us know when she wants down, up, food, toys...just whatever her pretty, little heart desires. How does she let us know? Well, she just tells us! Her vocabulary is slowly expanding. She's got a handle on "dada," "mama," "hi," "buh-bye," "woof woof," "uh-oh" and "Piper." She's still working on "Moose." But what I'm most proud of is her progress on "please," where she will hand you a book and say "pleezsh" as in "Father, I would certainly appreciate it if we might sit on the couch together while you read this story to me. Please." I'm still a bit fuzzy on the rest of it, but she is clearly having a conversation. What's being said or who she's talking to is open to debate. I just try and keep up my end of the discussion with standard responses. "I know!" "Right?" "Is that so?" "I told you that chick's crazy!" And so on.
While I realize a number of you are here for PFFD-related information, I find myself somewhat lacking in that area today. Trust me...that's not a bad thing. If I can avoid ever feeling like this again, I'd like to do so. But I suppose that's the beauty of being where we are. We're past the point of not-knowing. We've met The Man. He's on board. We've got a plan. A schedule. We can enjoy Emily for who she is and not focus solely on what she has.
Before you get all giddy and think we're going to completely re-vamp the site by putting a banner that reads "Super Deluxe Happy Fun Time" superimposed over a picture of a smiling family with everyone laughing and holding hands and wearing matching outfits...slow down. I still have my dark, depressed, rage-filled moments as I watch Emily's right leg dangle just out of reach of the floor. Those moments usually feature my inner-monologue yelling questions that start with "WHY THE F-..." But that's just what they are...moments. They don't last for days or keep me company during sleepless nights.
I suppose that's the difference a year makes. We are a year older. We are a year wiser.
And we are a year closer to all that pain and uncertainty just being a distant memory.