Friday, May 3


Last week my sister and brother-in-law made their way out of town; they attended a friend's wedding in Key West. So for days I was getting texts like this from her: "Florida is great!  We got settled into our B&B, and just got out to Duval Street to meet our friends.  It's really cool here.  Even better than I expected.  Like Mackinac Island in the Caribbean."

Wellllll.  Congratulations to you guys.  

Congratulations for doing vacation right.  They too have a sweet little baby girl, but they took a Florida vacay without her.  Don't get me wrong, I'm all for family vacations that include the whole family (and so are they), but seriously... sometimes it's so very blissful to relax without changing diapers and listening to a wailing child.  So in total honesty, congrats to them.

And because they were 5 minutes from Cuba [sans baby Ellie] my mom and grandma very graciously offered to journey westward to our neck of the woods and watch little Ellie.  I knew the grandmas' Kzoo vacation just wouldn't be complete without both babies keeping them on their toes!  So I trucked Sol on over there, and they all had a fabulous time.

Mama Mel did a lot of visiting.  [and omg was it ever adorable to visit her. each time when I drove up, she was squealing with glee as she waited for me in the doorway. and when I would walk up she would reach her arms out and wiggle her fingers as if she just-couldn't-get-to-me-fast-enough. and when I reached my arms out to hold her, she twisted her torso and streeeetched to get to me. and once she was in my arms, she would lay her head on my chest as if she were listening for my heartbeat to see if it was really me, and then she would push herself off my chest with her hands and look at me with the most gloriously radiant smile, the very best way to display her ever-multiplying perfect tiny teeth, and after she looked at me good and long, she would throw her head once more against my chest and wrap her tiny arms around me. and in moments like that, I can physically feel her love for me.]

As a thank-you, Ellie and Sol bought Grandma CC and Grandma GG tickets to see Wicked [the musical].  Mama Mel offered to watch the Solchop and Ellie on Sunday afternoon, all the while both grams did their part in supporting the arts.  So for a few hours I babysat my own daughter and niece, and it was heaven.  Sol slept while Ellie was up and jolly, and then Ellie slept while Sol was awake and ready to entertain.  Easy peasy.

As I mentioned before, Miss Solaya Haven refuses to sit in my arms and cuddle with me.  It's one thing I absolutely crave as a mother, and I can't have it.  Sol is far too curious to just sit there with me. GOOD HEAVENS, NO.

But that Sunday, she missed me.  I missed her.  After sweet Ellie fell asleep, Sol climbed up into my lap and I carried her into Aunt Liz's reading room.  We sat there, mother and daughter, on a soft cozy chair in peace and punctuated silence.  I held her closely and spoke to her.  I told her how terribly I missed her, but that her grandmas missed her too, and they were happy to have her with them for a few days.  I told her the things I had done while she was on "vacation" with grandmas, and I told her everything that I have planned for us.  We sat there in that chair, the two of us, and basked in the eery glow of a cloudy, rainy day.  I listened to her breathe, one hand on her back, rising and falling with every breath she took.  I considered the enormity of the fact that I was the one who gave her those breaths.  I created the lungs she's using, and I have heard nearly every breath that's escaped her mouth since the moment she took her first breath.  She lay on my chest, ear pressed to my skin, and she listened to my heartbeat.  I considered the enormity of the fact that she knows the beat of my heart, and she knows it well.  She's been comforted by that same heartbeat since she was a tiny speck in the depths of my belly.  We sat there in that chair, Sol nestled against me, eyes wide open and fingers tracing lines along my shoulder.  We sat there, the two of us, silenced and comforted by the love that settles over the perfect entity of a mother embracing her daughter.  And just when I thought I couldn't possibly love Sol any more, whatever was holding my heart together at that moment burst open, an even greater love manifesting itself and making its way to the tiny human in my arms. 

If that isn't bliss, ladies and gentlemen, I don't know what is.

Oh come on, don't tell me you wouldn't have snapped a pic
if your daughter finally decided to cuddle with you...

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