le troisieme anne
You are three years old today. Wow. This morning you gave me and your daddy a rare present: you let us sleep in all we wanted. When you crawled into our bed at 5:45, I thought it was going to be business as usual (we don't even use an alarm clock any more, just you). But you fell asleep again, and so did I. Your father? Never noticed a thing. We were a little late to our schools today, but so what? While you slept beside me, I had a chance to dream and doze and meditate on how much I love you.
I don't love you just because you're cute. You've always been a traffic-stopper, with your big eyes and pouty mouth, and when people compliment you I just take it as your due. Your outer beauty is an objective fact, as St. Jack confirmed last September. But your real beauty is in the every day miracle of your life: the silky smoothness of your hair, the soft whoosh of your breath, the long corridors of your memory, the endless energy of your movements, the flash of mischief in your eyes, the subtle physics of your thoughts. Lying beside you, feeling your toes touch my thighs, I wonder how someone so big (in body and spirit and mind) ever fit inside of me like a Russian nesting doll.
I worry about you a lot. I worry that you'll be the kid in diapers on the first day of school. I worry that you'll pick up my love of seated past-times and neglect your physical health. I worry that I don't pay enough attention to you. I worry that you'll try to use one of my double-pointed needles as a Q-tip (again). I worry about famines and floods and global warming and energy shortages and plague. I worry that you love my parents more than you love me. I worry that you'll be popular in highschool and deathly embarrassed of your geeky parents. I worry about the kind of random accidents one sees in the first 5 minutes of "ER."
I worry that I'm not good enough.
But for every heart-gnawing moment of doubt and despair, there is antidote. It comes in many forms: the quick embrace; the serious, pursed-lips kiss; the flash of dizzying insight and synthesis; the gentleness you show to a little baby; and the quick tick-tock of your shoes as you run away to the next adventure, laughing because you know I'll be chasing behind you.
This is going to be an excellent winter. I'm so glad you're here to show me how excellent life can be.
blake at st. stephen's wedding. photo by st. jack.
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Don't make me send out the Blake. He doesn't listen to *anyone.*