I push Genny on the baby swing at the park. My hands push her thighs as she arcs toward me and I can remember the pat of hands on my own thighs. The reassuring light clap and push against my skinny girl legs. I feel the breeze in my face and taste my flying warm hair in my mouth.
I tickle Genny as she comes to me. We laugh as she flies away. She points at the other kids, I think, or perhaps she’s pointing at something I don’t even see. She kicks her legs and waves her pink-shoed feet.
By the time we head home from the park, Gen’s blue pants are dirty at the knees from crawling practice. This is the first time that she’s ever had dirty knees. I suppose this is one of those baby milestones to remember.
Since she learned how to crawl last week, Genevieve is becoming clingier. She never used to like to just sit in my lap and relax, but now she eagerly crawls into my lap and even rests her head on my shoulder. I think this is what Dr. Sears (or some other Dr. writer person) wrote is separation anxiety. Gen’s body is growing more independent, but her mind still needs to check back in with mom.
I like it when she comes to me on her own. It makes me feel wanted and needed and loved.
I am starting to think that this is the easy part. A baby loves you no matter what. As she grows older, I will have to prepare Genny for being a female in this society. How will I prepare her for the stress of being a woman? How will I explain the choices that I have made? Will she follow in my footsteps?
How funny that I can go from swinging babies and happy memories to wondering if my daughter will one day want to be a stripper. Stop, breathe and laugh, Sheila. Stay in this moment. Enjoy the swinging while it lasts.