The Moment I Knew She Was Ready

I remember the first time my girlfriend mentioned to me that her daughter had – at 13 months – transitioned into a big girl bed. My eyes widened as curiosity grew: “How did you know she was ready?”

My girlfriend smiled with a wink, responding simply: “She let me know.”

I’ve thought of that conversation countless times as a new mother while I navigate various stages and transitions and “new normals” a baby brings. And each time, my eyes widen. My curiosity grows. How will I know?

How will I know when she’s ready for potty training?

How will I know if this is a phase or something more?

How will I know when to babyproof the cabinets?

How will I know if she has a food allergy?

And each time, my girlfriend’s advice rings true: “She let me know.”

This week, I caught Bee climbing out of her crib shortly after nap time. It was startling at first, but of course, it made perfect sense: this was Bee’s way of telling me that she’s ready for something new. She’s ready to blossom and bloom and grow. She’s ready for her big girl bed.

Transitions are funny things. They’re never seamless; never clean. There’s always space there, a tiny gap where the doubt gets in. Bee’s no longer a baby, but she’s not yet a toddler. She’s still in-between, and I’m still questioning: Is she ready?

The answer, of course, is yes.

After all, she let me know.

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