Today is a very unordinary ordinary day. It’s an ordinary day in that it’s Sunday. We’ll get up, go to church, negotiate with Kitty over the amount of Doc McStuffins she can watch, nurse Elma, cook lunch, maybe go to the playpark, play Duplo or playdoh or jigsaws, eat supper, bathe the little ones and tuck them up with bedtime stories and kisses.
But it’s a milestone day for Elma. As of today, Elma has been out in this funny old world of ours for just as long as she was tucked up in my tummy. Forty-one weeks and four days. Every one of her days in the world has gone faster than that last week and four days!
She has grown and changed so much since I first held a tiny mewling little girl with her fluffy shock of dark brown hair. So much bigger, crawling all over the place, rapidly emptying every bookcase and cupboard within reach, and showing a most determined interest in all of her sister’s toys, rather to Kitty’s dismay. But those big grey-blue eyes are still filled with wonder, and her smile still has me reaching out to scoop her up for a big cuddle.
And so it seems only appropriate that it is one of Elma’s latest developments that should be my everyday ordinary.
It’s only been an everyday moment in the last couple of weeks and it’s still far from ordinary; Miss Elma has started to clap.
It was while we were in Spain that we first noticed that rather than just flailing, she was quite deliberately reaching out and bringing both hands together. They never quite meet perfectly, just close enough to grab each other in a little starfish hand splat, fingers all splayed out.
She’s just so pleased with herself every time she manages it, she sits there holding one hand with the other, bouncing up and down and looking around as if to say
“Look Mama! Look what I did!”
She loves to copy me if I clap or blow kisses at her, but she’s also just getting to the age where she can tell if I’m mirroring her. It’s one of my most favourite games, especially if we can persuade Kitty to join in. We sit on the floor facing Elma, and whatever she does, we copy. She’s getting ever quicker at picking up on it, but it’s usually a couple of moves before she realises, and then her eyes light up, and she starts to really focus, wiggling little fingers and then staring to see if I clap too, with squeal and giggle of joy and recognition when I do.
It’s a simple thing to cause such happiness, but one I think I could play all day.