Sometimes when I am holding my granddaughter, I think just for a moment that I am holding her mother. The soft smell of her hair, the silky cheek on mine. Just for a tiny slip in time I think that I am cuddling my own baby girl again.
Once in a while, when she is eating her lunch and grinning at me with her tiny teeth, I see my older son in her face. Just for a second, my heart catches and I am sure that I am back again with my own baby boy, making him laugh by pretending to eat from his sticky fingers.
And when she sleeps, soft and warm and so trusting on my shoulder, I sometimes drift to sleep myself. And when I wake, I think, just for a tiny piece of frozen time, that I am holding my baby boy. The same sturdy little body, the same gentle breath on my cheek. Just for a bit, for a split second, my mind hops back and I think that I am holding mine again.
But most often when she is doing her funny, rhythmic scoots across my floor, she is just Ellie. She is funny, smart, sassy. The frowns as she tries to figure out which plastic cups fit together and which can be stacked. Her tongue curls up over her lip as she tries so seriously to pull herself up to her feet.
She is herself. She isn’t her Mom, or her Uncles. She is Ellie. She is enough. She is just right.
And I love her so much its just plain silly.