I do wish it would stop raining in the evenings, then Anjali would play nicely in the evenings in the playground, get tired, have a bath, have her dinner and go to sleep. The last couple of days it had been raining really badly. Anjali didnt have the opportunity to climb, swing, slide and do whatever it is that little monkeys do at the playground.
As a result, last night, she just wasnt tired enough to sleep soundly throughout the night, and woke up for three drinks of milk. Between feeds, she was fussy, crying, wanting to be comforted and in general reefusing to sleep.
At 5.30 in the morning, when the third milk bottle went down, she had slready been up and gnawing at me for the past hour. When husband came with the bottle I told him "Listen, if she doesnt sleep, can you take over the entertainment? I have barely slept a wink all night."
Accordingly husband tried to pick up the little girl and walk with her around the house. A royal blue yell followed, which semi culminated in the barf of most of the last intake of milk.
When husband brought her back to the bedroom, she climbed on top of me and cried, until i assured her that I wont let her go. And the she fell asleep, just like that, across my torso.
Then, when I was fairly sure that she was asleep, I tried to tip her over on the bed.
The royal blue yell began again.
So she climbed back on me, tummy to tummy this time, and went back to sleep, with husband singing My Bonnie Lies over the ocean in a half sleepy and befuddled state.
I fell asleep and when I woke up at 7 in the morning, she was still sprawled over me, tummy to tummy. It was rather like sleeping with a large teddy bear with no fur.
This morning Anjali and I went as usual to patti's house. I was a little more befuddled than usual because of a very disturbed night's sleep (Anjali woke up almost 8 times last night, as opposed to twice, which is the norm).
We got into the elevator as usual and pressed 11. The lift went up and stopped. I went out. Anjali didnt. She wanted to swing the monkey from the lift bar.
I stayed outside the lift, holding the open button and said, "Anjali, come out". Anjali shook her head. It was all very fun.
Until the lift closed.
I hit the down button. It kept closing. I hit the up button, it still kept closing, and I watched helplessly through the glass panels as my daughter's face went from smiling to sober as the door closed behind her and the lift went up. It stopped at 13.
I jammed the two lift buttons as hard as I could. The next lift came. I took it up to 13 and raced out to the lobby.
The lift had gone down to 1.
The last time I had panicked so much was when I was afraid that my dad would hit me because I had flunked a tamil test in seventh grade.
I took the next lift down to 1, prepared for the worst. It had happened. The lift that Anjali was in was going up. All the way past the 20s. I watched helplessly, all the time screaming Anjali in my panic stricken voice, as I hoped against hope that she had dropped off at 1 and gone to the playground or something. But Anjali's friends were in the playground, and she was not there.
The lift stopped at 28. There is no way that it would stay at 28 while I took another lift up. Yet, what could I do?
(If anyone who is reading this is laughing, leave a note in my comments section. I will personally hunt u up and box your face.)
It was the longest elevator ride of my life. I dashed out of my lift at 28, glancing up with a sinking heart. The other lift had gone down.
"Anjali!", I screamed, more in desperation and despair, than in any real hope that she would hear me.
"here!" Came a voice.
It was the most beautiful voice that i had ever heard.
And Anjali was standing at the doorstep of a house three doors down.
"Amma", she said, coming towards me.
That was when I burst into tears. Gathering her to me, I lifted Anjali up. She pointed to the lady, with whom she had been.
"you were with aunty?" I asked.
"I brought her up from one", said that lady, "because she was alone"
I told husband this over the phone.
"Thats the second time!" he said proudly. (He can be proud! He wasnt there and didnt feel the same blind panic as I did.)
But you ought to hand it to the little girl for displaying a presence of mind and not crying, and going with the lady to wait for me. I still dont know whether to be terrified or thankful or both.
I had given the Doman inspired parenting a bit of rest, or rather I had taken a break from making new materials for Anjali for a couple of months, being busy with work and other stuff. Now we have restarted again. Here are the new books. Her favorite is still the cat and doog book
1. Shrek 2. Pictures from NASA of eartn and beyond 3. The Capseller and the monkeys 4. The hare and the tortoise 5. The lion and the bulls 6. What Anjali did at the zoo (Another favorite) 7. The water cycle 8. Rembrandt's paintings (under progress) 9. Daddy's sketches (under progress)
And some books in planning 10. Micro and Macro 11. Anjali at the playground 12. and a major project which keeps going around in my head is the alphabet project.
In addition to that granpa got a very beautifully illustrated Ramayana from India a few months ago. And Anjali loves to hear the story, especially when it comes to Kumbakarna snoring
My daughter, my little baby, is now starting to take an interest in clothes and jewellery. I am so overwhelmed that I could cry. But that is possibly because i am hormonal or something.
When Nisha aunty ironed patti's clothes, shhe told patti that she had some time. So is there anything else to iron? Patti wanted to give another saree to iron. But what did Anjali do? She went to her cupboard, brought out her butterfly shirt and asked nisha aunty to iron that.
And she wore the ironed butterfly shirt home in the evening.
And another day, she woke up, and found her bangles and my chain on the dressing table. So she specifically asked to wear them. Bangles and chains... on a girl who refused some time ago to wear clothes.
And now she shows preferences to clothes... Butterfly shirt, doggie shirt, crocheted top, blue pants (not the pink ones, not unless she is sleeping)
And when we pass the jewellery shop, she wants to look inside and especially wants to buy rings. (Doo they sell rings for babies? Never seen any before)
Then we go on the shaky bridge, find the tallest point and swing
And swing some more And then its down the slide. After we do this about 10 times, we get bored of the routine and we go exploring, we say hi to dogs and cats, we look at cockroaches, ants and beetles. If we are lucky, we sometimes find a mouse. Sometimes we pick frangipani for putting in our hair and then we climb the street soccer ladder, try to slip between the bars. Then we land up in the other playground, watch people play badminton, then maybe goo up the slides in the other playground.
Anjali has learnt how to smile at the camera. And isnt it a sweet smile? And look at all those cutey teeth!! Now Anjali has got two premolars coming out. Any one knows why the pre molars come out before the canines do?
It happened at the library yesterday evening. We were in the children's section, Anjali, daddy and I. Anjali and I were sitting near a section with animal books and daddy had gone to another section to look for more interesting books for Anjali.
After a few minutes, Anjali got bored with the ten or so books lying around her, and the various animals they represented.
"Appa, Appa", she said, getting up.
"Appa is on the other side". I told her
She ran away, saying "appa, appa". After half a minute, the sounds stopped, and I presumed that she had found appa.
So I put away the books and got up (being bulky, it takes me a lot longer to get up than it takes Anjali), walked a few paces and found husband flipping through a book.
"Where is Anjali?" I asked, standing on tip toe to peek behind the shelves
He shrugged. "I thought she was with you".
"No. She came to look for you. she said Appa Appa"
"You take the children's section and I'll see the rest of the library"
So I stepped out. Scanning the rest of the library for a yellow clad imp. Then there she was, sauntering towards me from the library entrance looking casually over all the books and such on display.
She saw me, did an about turn and ran at top speed. I ran after her to catch her and determined not to let her out of my sight even for two seconds if I didnt know that all the exits are blocked.