E has an incredible memory. She describe in vivid detail outings from when she was barely two. She mimics facial expressions and inflections when she recounts conversations and I'm not even entirely sure she's conscious of doing so. She remembers EVERYTHING we say to her.
I asked her recently if she remembers before her sister was here. They're only 22 months apart. No, she said quietly. She looked upset.
It was her bedtime. We were reading a book we hadn't read in a while. In it, the grandfather and grandson discuss the nature of prayer. "Does God hear our prayers?" the little boy asks. The grandfather says yes. Does God have ears and a mouth? my little girl asks. "Not like you or I do, honey," I answer her. Well then how does God hear our prayers? How does God answer? A thought expressed recently by an internet friend ran through my head: I didn't know motherhood requires an advanced degree in divinity. I fumble: "I think it's different for every person and every prayer. You might not hear the answer right away but God hears you and God will answer your prayers."
Immediately she spoke in a loud, clear voice: God, how do you turn people back into toddlers? She paused. Mama, I didn't hear my answer yet.
"Why do you want to turn back into a toddler, love?"
Because I don't like that I don't remember all of me.
I snuggled my girl as she fell asleep, rubbing her belly and thinking of her beautiful soul and the extent of her life's frustrations that I already cannot fix.