Stella sleeps like an angel. Stella eats, for the most party, really well and on her own. She can play by herself for long periods of time but is also really social. She has a circle of friends whom she knows and loves to see. She learns something new every day and is ridiculously proud of herself every time. She has a gorgeous sense of humor and does things specifically to make us laugh. Although she remains too busy to cuddle most of the time, she also likes run to us and kiss us when we pick her up from daycare.
Each night, after we give her her bath and tuck her into bed, I am left with a very sweet, giddy feeling. Every single night. It's like that moment when you realize you're falling in love with someone, except you feel it every day, multiple times a day.
This is why I wanted to have kids, and sometimes I can't believe how lucky I am.
And while I do think a lot of this is the age -- the independence, the ability to communicate, the energy and humor and constant learning and sweetness -- I also think overcoming depression has helped me (and Dave, who suffered, too) lift a veil so we could see how awesome things were all along.
Even now, with Dave out of job and our lives in possible turmoil, I find that what I think about most of the time is Stella. How she picked up No Exit by Sartre (the French version -- Huis Clos) and began "reading" it as she would a Dr. Seuss book. How she ran into the kitchen last night while I was making chili and hugged my legs. How she's obsessed with the alphabet, especially the letter A, and looks for letters everywhere. How she loves to belt out a tune, even adding a sassy "cha cha cha" to the end of such classics as "Baa Baa Black Sheep." How she says "all done," when she's finished eating and begins cleaning up after herself.
I'm so lucky to have such a kid in my life, and I'm equally lucky to be able to appreciate her now.