I am sitting on the floor with the baby. She is holding on to the coffee table and cruising, but when she seems me sit down, she lets go, reaches for me and falls on her bottom. She crawls over to me, climbs in my lap and pats my face. Then she crawls back to the table, pulls herself up, lets go, and falls again, smiling.
My Big Girl is sitting at the kitchen table with a box of water colors and a sheet of scratch paper, patiently waiting for me to open the box and get her a cup of water. "Please I paint, mommy," she says again and again, with a shorter pause and an increase in volume after each iteration.
We are all still in our pajamas at 10 in the morning on a Tuesday. The two small ones have chest rattling coughs which seem to bother me far more than they bother them.
I kiss the baby, who has moved on to shaking a maraca with her entire body, and walk into the kitchen to help my artist. I get her the water. I open the box. She sets to work.
There is a complete un self consciousness with which she creates, and yet it is not an effortless. She is studiously bent over her painting, choosing her colors and her brush strokes carefully. "It needs more orange. It's not done yet."
I watch the colors swirl together, without any need to "be" anything to mean anything.
In the living room, my baby is both coughing and waving a drum stick like a conductor's baton, just for herself.