Our sitter is in Michigan this week visiting family. Sean and I agreed to work together to cover watching Briar. She came to work with me for most of Monday, ending the day at Sean’s office. The next day I brought her into work, only to be sent back home – not that I am complaining!
It was incredible. They should really institute one day a month when you go and just spend a day with your child.
That’s what the weekend is for, you say.
But no, that isn’t true. There is something remarkably decadent about being home with your child on a weekday. The air is charged with something different than the Saturday whir of sprinklers and hum of lawn mowers, no one is playing their radio in the yard, there is a certain stillness. You are home to be with your child, not to do yardwork, or clean house or go the store. Your only duty is to your child. Focus. No guilt, just you and your little person. We sat on the floor, looked at each other, played, giggled. It was precious, precious time.
Yesterday, Sean stayed home with Briar. They walked downtown around noon so that he could do a thing or two at the office and then I met them there to feed her. After that they went to the park, Sean steering the jogging stroller and Briar singing, sleeping and stealing hearts. Based on the look of deep affection she had on her face as she looked at him this morning after waking up, holding onto his chest as if to lay claim, I’d say they achieved an intense level of bonding. I go wild when I see her looking at him in that way. He has definitely talked about feeling as if some of the early months were about mother and daughter, not complaining about exclusion, just stating a fact, that I suspect must have hurt. But when Briar looks at him like that his face changes.
First of all, having Briar smile at you has the same effect as a fat, steaming mug of hot cocoa on a cold winter’s day, she just moves through you warming your whole being. You can’t not feel something. Then when she looks, waiting expectantly as if to say with a squeal and a giggle, “Ok, this is when you smile and giggle back at me! Isn’t it SO fun?!” Infectious. Beginning a day with Briar choosing you as the person she wants to give her smiles to and hold onto. Wow. Makes for an incredible day.
After the morning lovefest between the twins I call Sean and Briar, I came to work with Briar and the bags- bag of diapers and wipes and fresh clothes, bag of toys and books, bag of food and utensils. It’s not necessary to travel so heavy, but I wanted to make every effort to keep Briar happy, quiet and workplace friendly. Luckily she seems to charm everyone in the motley gang that I work with (using motley in the friendliest sense of the word).
She has been such a doll. This morning I was sitting with Debbie, our bookkeeper who comes very close to matching me in her passion for and infatuation with, our little Miss Briar. Anyway, we were sitting just watching her as she played. She was alternating between a book and a cardboard tube. Debbie and I got to talking when all of a sudden Briar lifted the tube to her mouth like she’d been doing it all her life and howled full on into the tube. I would have thought the amplification would have startled her. I saw air under Debbie as she shot up from her seat, laughing, but startled. She kept howling and exclaiming away as her voice traveled from her mouth, down the tube and out into the office in an impressive boom. She loved it. So proud of herself. Debbie slipped out the door, closing it behind her and giggling that I was in trouble now that Briar had learned how to be heard.
It was one moment in a day full of Briar. She touched everything I did and everyone that I worked with- from crawling down the hall to visit the other folks in the building, to squealing at the most impressively appropriate times, she colored our day. It was delicious to be able to turn from the computer, see her balancing by the file cabinet with a huge grin on her face (and mine) and then scoop her in my arms, nuzzle her face and whisper in her ears how much I love her. She is asleep in the stroller for the second time today. As I type I can feel the pull that I feel whenever she is near, I know where she is. Like a slightly worn tire always veering to one side, I veer to Briar. It is a wonderful tether that she has created, a happy captivity. I am, during every waking moment, grateful to be forever tied to Briar.