Saturday, October 1, 2011

Babysitting baby Penny...

has made me think twice about having another child.  Or more truthfully about having another child and still living in our condo, five light years away from the garage.

I have been babysitting for a friend who just had a beautiful little red headed girl named Penelope.  She is spectacularly cute and Scarlett gets so excited knowing that Penny is going to come and spend the day with us.  We babysit every other Monday so I always let Scarlett know what to except on the Sunday night before Penny arrives.  She goes to bed excited and wakes up asking "where's Penny go?", I tell her that Penny will be here soon and we wait. 

The first Monday I had Penny I decided to take the girls to the park.  Little did I know what a huge task that would become. As excited as Scarlett was for Penny to come visit, she was just as unexcited for Penny to demand any of her only child attention.  She wanted to touch, poke, stuff a pacifier into, cover with a blanket, hold, bounce and feed Penny all day long, but the second I tried to do any of those things for Penny she whined "mommy hold you" (translation - "mommy hold me"...we are still working on that pronoun switch).  So you can imagine the walk to the car was a challenge, but with the help of a stroller and a lot of encouragement from me, we made it in one piece.  Penny on the hip, diaper bag on the shoulder, backpack on the handles, and Scarlett leaning dangerously over the edge of the umbrella stroller.

We made it to the park, Scarlett piled into her stroller and off went went.  The familiarity of the park eased me into the newness of having two girls by my side.  We stopped to feed the ducks and Penny fell asleep tucked in tight to my chest.  Her steady breath combated by Scarlett's constant flow of chatter.  Both a form comfort to a mothers heart. It struck me how the comfort of companionship with Scarlett transformed so quickly from those moments of close steady breaths rising up and down on my chest to mutual respect, trust and laughter. We walked to the playground and I encouraged Scarlett to play by herself as I was busy holding a fast asleep Penelope. Scarlett spent most of the time yelling "mommy come 'ere" and "mommy help" and I spent most of my time saying "you can do it sweety" and "don't jump off that".  When we were both tired and Penny woke up from her nap I decided it was time to head home.

The walk back to the condo was worse than the original walk to the car.  It was a full five minutes of screaming hungry baby and dragging her feet toddler before we stepped foot through the front door.  Home sweet home.  Scarlett napped, Penny ate and the world was once again at peace.  Scarlett and I spent the remainder of the afternoon taking turns holding Penny and entertaining her with funny faces and silly noises.  By the time Layla came to pick up her precious girl I had forgotten all about the chaos of the morning and had fallen into the routine of motherhood.  Maybe two sweet little girls in a condo isn't so bad after all...especially if the afternoons always end like this...

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