The Dawleys

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Another Year

In two weeks, Ella will be two years old! I feel like it was just a few months ago that I was posting about her first birthday. I always say it, but time really flies. It is so amazing to see her grow and learn new things every day.
I love seeing her develop into her own little person. She is such a sweet and compassionate little girl. She is funny and silly. She is so intelligent and amazes me every day.
Lately we have been spending lots of time outdoors thanks to the gorgeous weather. We go outside after her nap until it's time to start dinner. Then after dinner, we go for a walk as a family and then spend more time outside until it's time for bath, snack, and bed. At the park, she loves to search for rocks in the sand, go down the slide by herself, and swing. In our yard, she loves to play with sidewalk chalk, blow bubbles, collect rocks from around the tree, and play with her little neighbor friend, Evie. She also loves to say hi to walkers passing by our house.
Ella's favorite indoor activities are helping with chores around the house, dancing, reading books, and doing art projects.
While Ella is learning so much every day, I am learning and growing as well. Ella has taught me how to truly be present in the moment and enjoy all of the simple things. The way the sunshine illuminates the bubbles floating gracefully in the air. The smell of the warm spring breeze. The sweet smell of Ella's head as she snuggles close before bedtime. The constant sparkle in her eyes as she goes about her day. The wonder on her face and joy in her voice when she yells, "Wow!" at everything that amazes her. The sweet sound of "Mom." So many moments every day that fill my heart with so much joy and love. She has also taught me to separate my emotions from myself. To show patience, warmth, and love in the moments when all I really want to do is yell. She has taught me to be grateful for every moment of our day. She has taught me to love myself. For if I don't love myself, flaws and all, how will she ever be able to love all of herself too?
I love watching Ella grow and show so much independence. I am so proud of her. At the same time though, it is so hard to watch her need me less and less and to venture out on her own more and more. I read a quote once about how being a mother is like having your heart walking around outside your body. It is so true.
How is it possible that my heart is overflowing with joy and breaking at the same time?