“She was so happy today. She just kept running back and forth with that scrunched up smile. So happy.” That was the description of how Caroline’s day was yesterday given by her afternoon daycare caregiver.

Caroline and I set out for our evening after dinner walk, Daddy mowed the lawn and needed the break. I opened the stroller and asked her if she wanted to go for a walk. “No.” Laughter reflected off the house from across the road at the Sucktacular house where Mrs. Sucktacular sat on her porch, talking on the phone, waving to my daughter. She can’t say hello to me, but can wave to my daughter? I will be grateful that she waves at all, but man, what a weirdo!

I strapped her in with my usual, “one, two” when I put her arms through, but heard a little voice say “two” along with me.

Caroline got a little splash happy in her bath last night, thoroughly soaking me; mascara running down my cheek. I said “please stop,” held her hands, said “no.” The splashing continued and I eventually splashed her back a bit and told her it was not nice to splash, which only upset her. How can you teach empathy?

This morning we awoke to cooler than average temps and I realized I had laid out shorts for school. Just before we bolted out the door to head to school and work I changed her into some khaki pants and she helped as usual, “step, step.” Her shoes would not fit thought the pant legs, so we had to remove them, and when I went to put them back on she stepped into them almost on her own, pushing her little heels in, so proud of herself.

We were headed to the door bags in hand when I saw the mess of books in the family room someone had created while I cleaned up the breakfast dishes. I asked her, “Should we clean up our books before we go to school?” Off she ran pointing at the pile and we worked together to put them back on the shelf. I left one book on the floor that doesn’t quite fit on the shelf and when I turned back, there was my daughter big book in hand, grunting to heft it onto the shelf. When she was satisfied, off we went towards the excitement of a new day.

I miss her immensely while I am working. I often wonder what she is doing, if she misses me at all. Seeing her so independent, so involved in her world, and how much she understands puts me at ease. She knows that at the end of her fabulous day I will be there to hug and kiss her & take her home.


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