He crawls away from me, until he gets to the edge of the door which will lead him out of our kitchen and into the den. There he stops, turns around, looks at me and comes back to play with the Tupperware again. He hasn't found his baby wings yet. He hasn't realized that we are not one yet. I am still his person. At not yet eight months old, I am his world. He lights up when he sees me in the morning and cries when I walk out of the room without him.
This is the way it should be. Yes, he will get over his separation anxiety soon. Yes, he will one day leave the room I am in on purpose. But not yet. I will savor the time until then.
Logan: Iss, I think we need to eat at home this week. He reaches for another hot wing from the container in the middle of the table.
Bailey: Daddy, we are eating and we are at home.
Logan: Did you coach her to say that?
Me: Nope, she got that one on her own. Babe, I'm doing the best I can. Dinner is still dinner, as long as we all eat together.
Logan: Pause. I never thought of it that way. So, okay, dinner at home, no restaurants this week. But I don't care where the food comes from. One week, lets just try it for one week, okay?
Me: That sounds like a plan.
At 2am that next morning, she came into our room and said, mama I can't go to school today. I know bug, I do. But it's only 2am, I told her. Then I did something I rarely do, I pulled her into bed with us. She slept curled into me, nestled in between Logan and I for the rest of the night.
When I was in California, she slept with me two nights in a row. The two nights following my losing the baby. Those two nights, I felt guilty for, because she was there to comfort me. Now I know it works both ways. It's okay for her to be a comfort to me on occasion, just as it is for me to be that for her. That's what makes us family. Yes, she is seven years old, my first baby. But she is getting so big too. Big enough that we are starting to become friends in some way.
I want that, to be friends with my kids. Their mother first? Always. But friends too.
My Mom: So, Papa** and I are coming out mid-June. We're hoping to find a house to buy while we are there.
Me: Really? That soon?
Mom: Yeah. I've already started working on my book and he's pretty much finished with the practice. Jordan has a handle on it, he's been there for nearly two years. The practice runs itself these days. We're ready for the change. Ready for the new chapter in our lives.
Me: Mom, you know there is a house for sale down the block from us.
Mom: You'd want us to look at that? It wouldn't be too close?
Me: No, not at all. We'd love it.
Mom: Oh I'm so happy to hear that. Ok, well pull the phone number, so I can call on it, okay?
Me: I will call them for you.
Mom: You know it's funny, but so many people don't get to say that their grown daughter is one of their best friends.
Me: I know, that's just sad. God, I hope the girls and I are like that one day.
Mom: I know it will be like that for you.
**We call my step-dad, papa. Have since they got married when I was eight.
Kate: Are you guys sending the girls to summer day camp?
Me: I don't know. Maybe? We go back and forth on it. Morgan wants too, but Bailey doesn't at all.
Kate: Yeah, Aidan doesn't want to either. If we send him, you know he'll fight me every single morning. It's almost not worth the trouble.
Me: Yeah, I know. I want the time with them, the freedom to sleep in. Ha. But the reality is, I don't know that I want to entertain them, or listen to them fight all day every day for the next 10 weeks.
Kate: Well what if we share the kids? Take turns on certain days? Split them up on certain days and then have a day a week where we all do something together? Then we can both say, have a day a week free and the rest will work itself out.
Me: That is awesome. I'm in for sure. Can I have Friday off?
Kate: I knew you'd ask me that.
Me: At least I'm consistent.
Kate: Um huh. Consistent, pain in the ass maybe.
I wake up late/early one night to the bed shaking. He's sobbing, all 6'4" curled up around a pillow, with his hand shoved in his mouth to be quiet. I comfort him and calm him down and then ask why he is so upset. I wanted that baby. I wanted that baby so bad that it hurts. I wanted you to never have to go through this again. I couldn't fix it and I wanted too. You needed time to grieve, I had to be the one to not fall apart.
Well now it's your turn I tell him. Babe, we will have another baby, I tell him.
I can't even tell you how much I wanted to have another baby, he says. That baby, our baby.
We will. That one wasn't meant to be. But there will be another try, another chance. If not through us, we'll adopt. We'll find our baby. The one that is meant to be in this family.
There will be another baby. I know it. I feel it. Not yet, I need time. But sooner than one might think, I'd bet.
It's a crazy life, it keeps me on my toes, but it's my life and I wouldn't give it up for anything.