She's only 2, but I swear she knows what she's doing when she opens the front door in the morning and the dogs go flying out. She must know that it'll also send me flying out the door, half-dressed, with my jeans and my pajama shirt on, and no bra. She must know that her and I will go on a high speed car chase, at least for 2 blocks, to catch those dogs, and that she and I will look disapprovingly at them as they crawl into the car.
And she must know that when she crawls out of her bed for the tenth time at night that, just like the nine times before, she will get a spanking. She will cry and say "okay" when we tell her to stay in her bed. But she must know it's a promise she won't keep.
She must know that pouring an entire bottle of Hope's hair oil, that liquid gold that I have to go to a different county to get, is wrong. That I will sigh in frustration and try to scrape it off the wood floor with my hands and then funnel as much of it back into the bottle as I can. Okay, maybe she doesn't know just yet how hard that oil is to come by and how very frugal I am. But, she must know about the sigh. She must be able to predict the sigh and the consequences to follow.
When a child is two, it's hard to know what it is they know. Though...I have my suspicions. But there are some things that I'm sure she's sure of. Some things that she says confidently and there is no denying that she believes them to be true.
"Mommy loves me and Daddy loves me and Hopie loves me and Bella loves me," she says. She's sure of it. "Jesus Loves Me," she sings in it's entirety several times a day, with no provocation. She's sure of it. "I love you, Mama," she says out of the blue. She's sure of that, too.
Love is the one thing I know she knows. And it's the one thing I know, too. Sometimes when I'm running down the street half dressed, or sighing that big sigh I think, for a moment, that "crazy" and "frustrated" is what is most true about me. Sometimes, on days when there has been a lot of crazy and lot of frustration, I'm tempted to believe that it has swallowed up the best parts of me.
But I know it's not true. Because sometimes, when everyone is settled in for the night, and I lay in bed waiting for blessed sleep to come, the last thing I'm aware of is how full my heart is of love. How deeply I am loved and how deeply I have been made to love. And how it's the one thing I know. I'm sure of it.
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