Today I got Emerald’s hair cut for the first time ever. She was in a terrible mood, but thankfully with a little “chocolate persuasion” (otherwise known as bribery with M&Ms), she sat in the chair and let the trim happen. The thought did occur to me that I would have never in a million years let Adelade or Sawyer eat M&Ms at 18 months old, but I quickly banished the thought because I am an OLDER mother with an 18 month old, and I have reached a stage where I do what I want. And non-screaming was definitely what I wanted in that moment.
Third children. They are just a totally different thing.
I’ve heard it said that you’re tired by the time you’re dealing with a third. She’s 18 months old! How tired am I going to be with she’s 17 and she’s out running around with no supervision because I’m using a walker to get around by then? Totally kidding. M&Ms are one thing, but I do intend to supervise her for a reasonable number of years. I’m planning to stay young by going to youth camps for the next 20 years. I will be the old woman trying to do the ropes course at camp. Emerald is going to have such an awesome angst-ridden teen experience with her old lady mother hovering over her.
When we got home from Emerald’s haircut the thought occurred to me that this is probably my LAST first haircut! I didn’t feel sentimental about it. I did take pictures and I took a little bag to put a lock of hair in. I came straight home to put it in her baby book and to write a little something about the experience. I’m not sure why I didn’t stop and get sad that she is my last baby, but I think it had to do with the desperate attempts to get her to stay in the chair or maybe the crazy way I was making voices and faces and dancing around to try and keep her happy.
Despite her foul mood earlier, she ended up doing well in the chair. And now, while she naps, I can look at the pictures and pause for a minute and think about how blessed I am to have this little whirlwind of a girl in my life. How close I came to giving up on her ever coming into existence. How much harder she has made my life, how much better she has made my life, how much more dependent I have had to be on God since she arrived. I can think about how adding a third child to our family knocked me down a few pegs. How it changed me as a person. I can remember how she is making me a better woman, a more faithful Christian, and a more sympathetic friend.
Emerald makes me laugh. She keeps me company. And she can infuriate me like no other. How I love this child! It’s only a haircut. But, I guess I’m getting sentimental after all. Not because she is my last, but because she is herself. Sweet, tough, fearless, and further evidence in my life that God knows exactly what I need right when I need it.
When she wakes up in a few minutes, she will be happy. Her nap will have chased her bad mood away, and she’ll be all excited to get her shoes on and go pick up Adelade and Sawyer from school. And when we all get in the car after school, it’ll only be a matter of minutes before one of the kids will say, “EM-ER-ALD-uh!!!” in that exasperated way. But, she will just smile in her mischievous way or she will scream in protest, and we’ll go home one big happy family.
I’m so glad that she’s here. We have lots of last firsts ahead. I’m looking forward to experiencing each and every one. Because Emerald isn’t just my last baby, she is my very first Emerald. And, I plan to enjoy every crazy moment of mothering her, even if I’m the old lady on the ropes course.
She’s worth a broken hip here and there.