09 March 2011

Nastia Liukin

When it was suggested to me that blogging might not be a bad idea in the interests of trying to sell more books, I was more than happy to comply. After all, being handed a book deal for Between Expectations felt like a gift. It was the least I could do to try to prove I deserved it. The more I thought about it, the more it seemed like a good idea. Writing every day is something I should strive for anyway. Writing every day during residency was impossible, but now I am a grown up (I reasoned) and need to take control of my life. Also, and this I think was the more compelling reason, Emmaline is beautiful. She is a mess of sweet baby cheeks framing a look of perpetual awe. How could I not embrace a forum that would allow me - in fact demand that I force feed pictures of said offspring to my unsuspecting readership?

Blog started: check. Pictures of Emmaline...well, you've seen more than a few. But lately it's gotten so much more difficult.

Let me explain. A picture to illustrate perhaps?

Do you see the problem? I have many more pictures from this week and not all of them are blurry, but the majority of those are of the back of her head.

The other overwhelming difficulty is in being able to step far enough away to capture the shot. This, again, is becoming increasingly impossible to do. Another picture you say? How about a montage?

Picture 1: Preparation

Picture 2: The Summit

Picture 3: The Head Injury

OK. I did not actually take this picture. I'm sure you understand why. There was screaming. There was a look of complete shock at the existence of gravity and the absence of exemptions for toddlers with a determination to climb. Did she land on a pillow? Yes. Did she actually require a head CT or even a bandaid? No. But she was down when she had only a moment before been up. And that was the biggest tragedy she had known in the seventeen months of her life up until then. Thus the tears.

She got over it. She moved on. She lived to climb again.

For a while, she was not terribly good at it. But in the last week she's become increasingly adept at wiggling her way up on top of things and then back down again. In the family room there are three identical storage cubes, each two or three feet high. Is it wrong to let her crawl from cube to cube, I wondered, or even to stand on top? In the mall there is an enormous room parents pay to gain admission to where she would be encouraged to climb on structures not entirely dissimilar from our own furniture. So why not let her climb for free?

And when she learns to get down using a stag handstand with half twist we can talk about upgrading to a gym, but until then I think the storage cubes are just fine.

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