The first few weeks of her life, the most exciting part of the day was when she had her eyes open…. As you well know, newborns sleep a ton and when they’re awake, it’s likely that they are eating and that’s about it. The relationship is extremely one-sided; not much give and pretty much all take. You wait impatiently for waking moments- make that daylight waking moments for your sole reward of getting to gaze into the little ones eyes for just a bit, or to listen to her “purr” during feedings as a small gesture of gratitude. The hope of seeing a smile was rare- unless of course, she was sleeping! The waking periods were unpredictable- she was eight weeks old before Jason’s mom actually got to see her awake; and the waiting can also be exhausting. I was certainly looking forward to when there would be much more joy in this particular bundle! And I haven’t been disappointed.
In stage two, we went from waiting for her to be awake to looking for that slightest hint of a smile….when she wasn’t sleeping! Here’s my joy- the first waking smiles were priceless, although elusive to catch on film! I would patiently hover over the poor child with camera in hand shooting picture after picture hoping to record one for posterity-- unfortunately she would also stare back wondering what the heck I was doing and not smile. Jason thinks I'm wacky since I always have a camera at the ready to capture priceless moments. I'm quite fanatical about capturing a perfect moment and I've been dubbed the "mom-arazzi." (At least now Kiera is quite a ham for the camera and breaks into full-blown smile!)
Coincidentally, Kiera’s regular smiles began around the same time that she began holding her head up on her own at nearly eight weeks. Within the past week, she has started showering us with smiles so frequently that it doesn’t feel quite so much like an Easter Egg hunt- but it is still exciting and contagious. My particular favorite smile is during feeding time when she spits out the nipple and then smiles up at you- it’s just too darn cute for words and makes me laugh every time. You can’t help but also smile right on back when she flashes that ear-to-ear toothless grin! She has this adorable Elvis-esque smile- she squints an eye and lifts up one side of her lip and then breaks into a full-blown grin, usually with her whole body as she excitedly circles her arms in the air and kicks her feet. I can now tell when she is going to smile because the eyes smile first- she gets that from her Daddy! I hope that she also has her Daddy’s infectious laugh; waiting for that is going to be stage three and even more priceless than Kiera’s miles of smiles. These wonderful baby smiles… they’re so rewarding.