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Love Explained.

by Amber on July 24, 2012

“Mommy,” Tori says as I snuggle her down in bed,  ”my friend was grumpy with me today.”

“Why, baby?”

“Because I wanted to marry her, but she didn’t want to marry me.”

“She didn’t want to marry you?”

“No. I was wearing my wedding dress and my wedding shoes, but she  said no.”

“Why didn’t she want to marry you?”

“She wants to marry a boy.”

“A boy?”

“Yeah. She said girls can’t get married. Why can’t girls get married?”

“Well, honey, lots of girls marry boys. And lots of boys marry girls. Mommy’s a girl, and she married Daddy.”

“Daddy’s a boy?”

“Yeah, Daddy’s a boy. And I love him very much. He’s my best friend in the whole world.”

“But I can marry a girl,” she says, nodding vigorously.

I gather her close and stroke her still-baby face. “Yes, honey. You can marry whoever you want to marry.”

“Why my friend say I can’t marry her?”

“Well, you’re a little young to get married,” I answerwith a smile.

“But when you love someone, you get married!” This last is said with a frown between her eyes.

“Sometimes you do. Sometimes you don’t. There are lots of different kinds of love.”

“I love you,” she says, wrapping her arms around my neck.

“And I love you. More than anything.”

“I’m going to marry you when I grow up.”‘

“You’re going to marry me?”

“Yeah. And we’re going to live in a castle. And be princesses. And daddy can be Prince Eric.”

“I’ll remind you you said that on your wedding day,” I answer, tears pricking the back of my eyelids.

“But I could marry my friend? If I wanted to?”

“God, I hope so,” I answer, snuggling her close. “But right now, it’s time to sleep. What happens when you sleep?”

“I grow!” she crows. “Soon I’m going to be thiiiiiiiis big,” she grins, stretching her arms as far as they go.

“That’s right. Soon, you’ll be bigger than mommy!”

“Uh huh. And when I get big, I’ll go to work. And get married!”

“I hope so, honey.”

“I’m going to marry you!”

“Well, no matter who you marry, you’ll always be mommy’s special girl.”

“You’re my special girl, too,” she says, grabbing my face and pulling me close.

I kiss her on the nose and smooth her hair back from her face.

“Good night, baby girl. Stay little for a while longer, okay?”

“Okay.” Then she rolls over and snuggles into her blankets, falling asleep almost immediately.

Please, world. Take a cue from my girl. Love is love. There’s no need to complicate matters.

Let her marry whoever she wants.

The universe could use more happy couples.

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by Amber on June 18, 2012

Brian was swishing Tori back and forth in the pool, her legs carving a wake through the water.

Feeling goofy, I ducked down into the stinging chlorine and surfaced inside the loop of his arms, directly in front of her giggling face.

“Mommy, I want to go underwater! I want to put my face in!”

This from the girl who hates getting water in her face.

“Are you sure?” I asked doubtfully.

“Yeah yeah yeah yeah,” she said, tearing loose from her daddy and throwing her arms around my neck.

“Alright. We’ll try it. But you have to trust me. Do you trust me?”

She nodded through her grin.

“Okay, then close your eyes and your mouth.”

She squeezed her eyes shut, but opened her jaw up wide.

“No, no, no. Close it. Close your mouth.”

She opened it wider.

“Nope. Wrong way. Here, I’ll show you.”

And I ducked her a little way under the water. Just enough so she could feel it against her lip. She spluttered, but grinned.

“See? You’ve got to close your mouth!”

“More, mommy!”

“Okay, then. Close it up!”

She did. Mostly. But she was smiling too big to manage it all the way.

I decided the only way she was going to learn was through experience. So I ducked her farther under. Up to her eyelashes. Just for a second.

She came up hacking. Hard. She wasn’t smiling anymore.

“I cold, mommy. I don’t like the water anymore!”

Feeling awful, I hustled her out of the water.

“Okay, baby. We’ll get out. No more water until you’re ready.”

She curled up into my chest, shivering.

Heading back to our beach chairs, I bundled her cold little body up in a towel and sat down in the sun, heating her up the best way I knew how.

Within seconds, she was asleep, leaving me to lie back and worry about her total shutdown.

Had I done permanent damage? Scared her away from ever wanting to swim again? That would sure suck.

But eventually, the warm sun did its work on me, too. It drove the tension from my limbs, decorating the inside of my eyelids with a fireworks display of bursting colors. I relaxed under her sleeping body  and followed her into dreamland.

I awoke to a sleepy Tori patting my face.

“Wake up, mommy. Wake up!”

Then, as I gazed blearily at her, she struggled out of her towel nest and tugged at my arm.

“Let’s go to the big girl pool!”

Within seconds we were back in the water, splashing and playing. Then she saw the water slide. The two story tall water slide.

“I want to go slide! I want to go slide!”

“But you’ll get your face wet!”

“Okay. Can I go slide?”

So much for that worry.

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