Parenting is a pure joy. Not a day goes by when I don't think that having Little Abbey running around is just the best thing. The phase that I am in now with the ability to communicate on a rudimentary scale has been fabulous. I spend my day pointing at this and that answering Little Abbey's endless curiosity of "what's that?" It is wonderful living a strange and new life through the eyes of my daughter. But despite all these joys, she does have her moments.
Take for example last night. For reasons unknown to me, she woke up at 1 a.m. for the first time in a long long time and came into our room crying. We did the usual checks to make sure she had a clean diaper, wasn't teething or hurting in some other way but she wouldn't stop crying. If we put her into her room she cried, in the spare guest bedroom she cried, where ever she cried. The only place she stopped crying was in the bathroom next to her favorite place on earth, the bathtub. Now had she been older, I might have said make yourself at home and gone back to bed but I wasn't about to leave her alone in a bathroom full of potential water hazards and scalding situations.
I carried her back to her room where she just went into full blown screaming mode. I closed the door and held the doorknob. Little Abbey has mastered the art of opening doorknobs and pretty much goes as she pleases these days which means my wife and I have to be extra vigilant about watching the outside doors and keeping them locked, something she hasn't yet mastered. Well of course Little Abbey tried the doorknob last night only to find it "locked" and that set her off into a mode I have only witnessed a couple times before. I could feel her sobbing and pulling at the doorknob and it broke my heart. Fortunately it lasted less than a minute and she went to bed.
I lay down in bed and waited ten or fifteen minutes before allowing guilt to get the best of me and snuck into her room. It was a little warm so I turned on her ceiling fan but a sleepy voice called out from her bed and said, "no fan" so I turned it back off. I went over, tucked her in and gave her a kiss. Whatever had gotten into her was now over and I could see her struggling to keep her eyes open. Once again, I was a father and having another of those moments of pure joy.