Something nice happened in our neighbourhood today. I was sitting in my office, working away on an essay when I saw the lady who has been staying there – I don’t know if it’s his mother or hers – standing at the front window, watching outside.
I saw the car pull in to the driveway. I saw him get out of the front seat, and, just as I expected, she got out of the back.
They were finally bringing home their new baby.
These neighbours have been living across the street for a sort time, but we’ve gotten to know them a little bit. The kid has become a fan of theirs. We see them out on walks, her bump getting bigger and bigger. The kid took them one of her baby toys – a Peter Rabbit that plays a lullaby. She’s a big fan of babies.
When I went to check the mail I met him out on the sidewalk. He looks elated. He told me they had a little girl, he told me her name, he needed no prompting.
It occurred to me later that when I see him again I will tell him she’s welcome here, anytime she just needs to get out of the house or having an adult conversation we will have a cup of coffee for her.
I want to tell him that she needs to listen to all the people telling her to take it easy these first few days, because I didn’t and I paid the price.
I want to impart all the knowledge that I’ve gleaned in the almost five years that I’ve managed to parent through – like the fact that on those days when you just need to be away from them, when you feel like you’re terrible and they’re terrible and you just can’t do it anymore? On those days they will eventually fall asleep and when they do you will miss them so much you can’t help but go in and kiss them on the forehead.
But at the same time I know that there’s just so much that they will figure out for themselves and that’s part of the magic.