Last I wrote to you was when this year began. And the year is almost wrapping up now. Time, as usual, flew by. Yet, it made its presence felt on good and bad days. You are fourteen months old now. It is a Saturday morning and the adults in your life are doing their usual things. I am sitting in a coffee shop, sipping on lukewarm coffee and reading a book. I am pretty sure that your parents and Nani are running around you, trying to feed you something healthy. And you kid, you must be throwing a tantrum, refusing food and insisting on standing on the dustbin and looking at trucks go by.
Which brings me to the last nine months. You can walk now. Actually scratch that. You can run now. We keep running with you/behind you and often tell you to slow down. I don’t think you understand the words ‘slow down’. Or the word ‘no’ for that matter. You have had two haircuts so far. One at an Indian temple, which you didn’t enjoy. Neither did your parents. And another one with Pedro, my go-to guy for haircuts in LA. That was pretty peaceful. Clearly, the American life is gelling well. Your long curls are gone. Sigh. You have become taller and thinner. I am pretty sure that your parents think of feeding strategies even in their dreams. It is a constant topic of discussion. Food and you seem to have a terrible relationship. We constantly look at healthier kids and wonder where did we go wrong. As you can see, our adult conversations have taken a hit.
You are not afraid of the pressure cooker anymore. Nor the blender. We do have hilarious videos of you losing your sanity every time one of the two used to go off. You can thank us for those. Or not. 🙂 We are still in the habit of recording your every move. Your every syllable. None of us have the luxury of seeing our childhood replayed to us. Watch our parents obsessing over us. You must think that is pretty weird. Well, that was a time when technology had not invaded our lives. I can’t even begin to imagine what it must be like right now, when you are reading this.
You have been speaking for months now. I can’t remember what your first words were. Maybe, I should check with your mom. When asked what’s your name, you say Autharv with a very heavy accent. We have no clue where you picked up the accent from! When asked who loves you, you respond with a prompt ‘mumma’. This, after months of coaching by your mom, obviously. You call your dad ‘Dadda’ and repeat that word ad infinitum through the day and night. ‘Maasi’ is work in progress. I am still waiting for you to say it. You know now that kisses mean affection. When we ask for a kiss, you sometimes oblige with a peck. It is endearing. 🙂 Few weeks back, you gave me a kiss without me asking for it. Needless to say, you made my day.
We have enrolled you into daycare. You cry every time we drop you there. All of us have come back teary eyed one day or the other. We are all growing up a little bit with you. Your first birthday was a very low key affair. You must know this already about us, that we don’t like fancy parties. We took you to the temple and later in the evening, your mom baked you a healthy cake. Which us adults gobbled up in no time. There will be a day when you would want to spend your birthdays differently. We will cross that bridge when we get to it. 🙂
Since you don’t get to have much of an opinion right now, we are making the most of it. We hug you tight, snuggle with you, kiss you, tickle you and carry you around on our shoulders. Writing it down so that you know you are loved. That you are growing up in a place of warmth and love. As parents, sometimes when kids grow up, the simplest and most obvious things are hardest to say.
There will never be enough space to write about everything. Just know that we are all doing well. We are getting closer to Thanksgiving, and we all have every reason to be thankful for what we have. There is a whole lot of love in our lives, from our partners, family and friends. There is support when we need it. There is laughter, good food and good health. And amidst all of this, there is you. The sun in our small universe.