A couple of years ago my mom and sisters were visiting me for Spring Break (we were living in Carmel Valley, they were living in rainy Washington). My sister, Meagan, a rockstar of an athlete commented on how buff my arms were. I told her it was from carrying Sawyer and Ellyn everywhere, often at the same time. Ellyn would have been four and Sawyer would have been 17 mos. or so. It was just easier to scoop them both up to load them into the van, remote controlled opening doors you know. Any ways, my mom told us a story of a man who could lift his cow (no, I don't remember the particulars). When asked how, he replied that he had just lifted that cow every day since it was born. His strength had just grown with the maturation of his cow. I can't picture a normal man lifting a cow.
Ellyn does not like to fall asleep by herself. Every night she takes medication to help her fall asleep. Some nights she is asleep in 10 minutes, some nights 2 hours. Most of the time she falls asleep about an hour after her meds. Ellie falls asleep on the living room floor. We lay out her blanket, or she grabs one from our blanket basket, and a pillow. Ellie looks at books, watches t.v., listens to the family, whatever, until she finally dozes off. After Ellyn is asleep it is best not to wake her for about an hour. However, after that you have a window of time to take her to bed. You wait too long and you are in danger of our little Boo waking up and feeling very rested, happy, and ready to party the night away. You don't wait long enough and she wakes up cranky and angry and violent. But, after an hour you can bend down, tell her it's time to go to bed, and walk her up the stairs. She will lean against you for the first few steps and then she is awake enough to hold your hand and walk up to bed. She will happily climb in, let you tuck the covers in around her, and fall fast asleep.
There is the occasional exception. Some nights she is just too exhausted. Tonight would be one of them. Ellie and Sadie and Sawyer spent hours on the trampoline today. I spent an hour with them, Jane spent 20 minutes or so and so did Mike. It was our first nice day since Monday and we spent the entire day in the sunshine. Mike and I finished putting up the net on the trampoline, Jane, Mike, and I all did some yard work, and all the while my three crazies jumped and played. Tonight, when I tried to wake up Ellyn and walk her to bed, she was boneless, a limp noodle, a sack of potatoes. I scooped my little girl up into my arms and headed to the stairs. Since I do not carry Ellyn nearly as often as I used to I nearly always think of that cow story when I do. I wonder if I do it often enough and at what point my girl will get too big for me. She is going to be a very tall woman.
But... in the meantime I giggle at myself as I think in my head that she is my little calf definitely on her way to becoming a cow. I wonder if she'll ever be completely offended that I call her my cow (of course, until now it has only been in my head). I hope she'll understand it is with absolute love and adoration.
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