What anyone can see, in anyone else

My lovely friends Mike and Emma became parents to the most perfect, little girl, Erin Mai,  on August 16, 2011. In her hour- and just day-old photos I could see glimpses of both the parents in her tiny face.  Two people all squished up into this new creation. How can there be a more powerful expression of love?

I say, and thought, all of this with genuine sincerity and some lack of self-awareness. When our daughter was born, her dad and I, spent weeks finding and pointing out all the things that she had inherited from us. My toes, his sleep habits, his smile, my eyes, someone’s hair but not sure whose yet, his jaw (probably) and on and on.

I was telling a more concise version of this to a friend on Twitter and then took a look at my daughter and realised that I don’t really see these anymore. Instead I tend to look for her in other people. I used to see her father’s beautiful smile when she smiled but now I see her beautiful smile in him. I notice how round her eyes are and see that I have similar eyes.

Six months on and her features are getting more defined. Her laugh is more distinctive, her appraisal of people is more succinct, her approval of people is more heartwarming. She loves seeing babies and smiles at so many passerbys that she constantly picks up fans along the way. One older woman walked with us for a while just to keep smiling at little M.

She has also become more demonstrative and energetic. She loves standing up and bouncing while holding on to things. Once she spots something she likes, usually my phone, she becomes a determined little person who crawls and shuffles and steps and pushes things out of her way just to get what she’s set her sight on. Her determination is amazing. Her enthusiasm for staying awake is also quite fun if a little tiring. Her naps have been reduced to five to ten minutes at most, these days, and as soon as she wakes up she usually spots the video monitor and heads straight for it with a smile.

She is amazing and it’s such a curious thing to find all these amazing parts of her wrapped up in other people. The pictures that follow are of some of the people who contain little bits of Mersina.




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