Friday, June 26, 2009


We walked through Granny's house last Sunday, sister and I pointing to every other item. Yes, I'll take the hand-tinted photos of the French Quarter, didn't you say you wanted the crystal decanters? I tried to usher us through quickly, squeezing this last trip before the estate sale into some made-up time limit. I said the dink needed to get home.

Dink was 12 weeks in utero when Granny died. At six weeks, I had pressed my face up to hers in ICU and yelled to her that I was pregnant. I could see in her eyes and her faint smile that she understood. I held her hand and told her all of the slim details I had so far of the pregnancy, and I prayed that she would find the dink one more reason to will herself healed. To an extent, that worked. At 8 weeks, I marched excitedly into her hospital room with a chain of ultrasound photos, pointing out the baby's arm buds and head. Her shaking hands crumpled the thin-sheeted imprints as she tried to rip one off. DH grabbed some scissors, and we left one of the photos in the room with her. And at 9 weeks, 10 weeks, and 11 weeks, I saw the dink move around her room, sometimes on the nightstand, sometimes on the windowsill, sometimes near the tv. I'd like to know where he was at 12 weeks, when she called it quits. I couldn't make it to the hospital in time to have one last look at her room. I suppose she decided that 27 weeks was too long to wait when she had already been waiting so long.

Granny, I wish you would have waited longer. You really would have loved the dink, and don't you remember how sweet S was as a baby, learning how to say Ga-ranny and running to you for a hug? I suppose life is full of sweetness no matter how long you live. And I guess you'd had your fill. I like to imagine that you're moving about the dink's room now, maybe petting his hair when he wakes up at night (you know he loves that), or simply watching from the corner in your old rocking chair.

Monday, June 22, 2009

First Father's Day

At seven and half months old, the dink has come along way. Recent accomplishments include sitting up for extended periods of time without falling over, drinking water out of mama's glass, and waving his hands in the air in his first attempts to imitate clapping. He also "hugs and kisses" me when I pick him up from daycare, which consists of him grabbing the hair on both sides of my head and latching his mouth on to my cheek. He certainly experiences each emotion to the fullest.

For Father's Day, dink gave DH the gift of fussing for the first time when DH left the room. It was just a little whine that didn't last long, but he let me know that his daddy's absence did not go unnoticed. That sort of thing is a big deal. DH is still telling the story of the first time the dink was happy to see him after work. It was shortly after I went back to work, and the dink and daddy started to get to know each other better by having their morning routine together. I was burping a schlumped over pile of sleeping baby, trying to rouse him to finish eating before going to bed, when DH came home. I passed over the groggy sweetness, who briefly opened his eyes, looked at DH, and delivered the funniest ridiculously sleepy half smile with his eyes barely cracked open, acknowledging his daddy.

I whimper too when I walk out of the bedroom at 6:40 a.m. and leave dink and daddy snuggled up in the bed. And when the daycare tells me he fussed all day and that they think he's sick or teething or whatever and then I get him home and he's happy as a clam. And when DH doesn't come home from work until after seven and I've been feeding and playing and mothering and houseworking for hours without him. But baby smiles bring celebration. Like mini hallelujah orchestras everywhere, and jumbled syllables of thanksgiving for this life, for life in general, for dinks, and for daddies.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Blackberry picking

On Sunday morning, I picked blackberries with Dad. DH fed the dink his apples and cereal while I hopped on the golf cart in my pajama pants and slippers carrying a mug of coffee and an empty Mardi Gras cup for the goodies. Dad had made several paths in the woods and cut back spidery branches before my arrival, so we'd have access to the pickins. After we'd filled two cups with mostly the juicy berries found in small slices of shade, Dad drove the cart fast over the edges of his bumpy land, so I had to cover the cups with my hands, to show the me blackberry vines that were almost ripe, not near ripe, and overripe. The early green berries he said are hard to spot in the backdrop.

When we got back, the blackberries nearly filled a quart-size ziploc, and he reminded me three or four times that day to take them home. He doesn't care for them. But he was already talking about which bushes would be ripe the next time I'd come.

DH is learning about his own blackberry picking with the dink. He called me from a break at a mediation today to tell me that every morning when he gets out of the shower, the dink gives him the biggest smile and kicks his legs from his bouncy seat. It's like dink is wondering what in the world happened to him for those five minutes and is joyous at his return. Every morning, a big smile and happy legs.