Tonight at bedtime you said something very bittersweet. As usual, after lights out and prayers, you wanted to "talk about something". Right now you mostly want to talk about how long until your birthday, your birthday wish list, how long until we visit Uncle Dale's farm, or about the animals at the zoo. But tonight you asked a new question.
"When am I going to be a baby again?"
It was bittersweet because I feel your little heart must long for all the attention that a baby demands. I had to gently explain to you that once we grow up from being a baby, we can never go back; that we just get bigger and bigger until one day, we are as big as mommy. "But I don't want to" you said.
I thought it would help if I tried to get you excited about all the things big kids get to do, like eating treats and food like pizza, hamburgers, ice cream, and french fries. Then I mentally chastised myself for making it seem like only junk food is treat food, so I added in rice, broccoli, and cheese. I said you wouldn't want to go back to taking 2 naps a day, and getting to eat only formula from a bottle. You weren't really buying any of it.
So I said that one day when you are as big as mommy, you could have a baby of your own. You asked "Is it going to come out of my tummy?" Although the answer is likely yes, I wanted to factor in that you may choose to adopt, have a surrogate, or not have children at all. So I said "Well it can if you want it to." You said "But I don't want it to." So I asked how you wanted to get it and you said "from the hospital." Then you asked, "What will its name be?" And I said, "You get to choose!." And you told me you wanted it to be named Chloe and that you wanted a girl.
I told you that someday you are going to be as big as mommy, and live in your own house. That scared you. You said you didn't want to leave our house and you would be scared to live alone. Then I said "Well, you might get married, like I did to Papa, and have a husband, and live in a house with him." You said "but I don't want to live somewhere else." I then realized that this conversation was just too heavy for an almost 4 year old. So I told you that you could live with Mama and Papa forever.
That seemed to satisfy you and we moved on to talking about your birthday toy wish list.
I fully know that chances are, you will grow up and move out. But someday I hope you get to read this, and know that once upon a time you were my sweet, innocent, vulnerable little girl who wanted to live with Mama and Papa forever.
I love you little one.
PS- Please forgive my incorrect quotations format. I can't remember all the rules and I don't feel like Googling it. :)