Friday, December 26, 2008

Missing my River

Today Mark and I went snowmobiling with the family. We were away from home for ten hours while my mom watched River – her first full day babysitting solo.

By four-five hours away from home, I was thinking of River and missing him a bit. Two or three hours later, I was really missing him.

“You’ve only been gone eight hours,” my brother said when I mentioned that I looked forward to seeing him.

“She hasn’t been away from him for that long in a while,” Mark said.

I spent a day in New York a few months ago, though I was with River for a couple of hours before leaving, unlike this morning, when I left shortly after he awoke. Besides that, I really haven’t been away much since my nine-day absence this summer.

By the time we were heading home, I was starting to get nervous that we wouldn’t get there before he went to bed.

“I can see River written all over your forehead,” my 11-year-old niece said, accurately.

I recognized, even then, that my missing him is like anything else I crave. Yes, it was a little difficult. But I knew that if I had to be away that once I passed that difficult moment, things would get easier again before I began to feel pangs for him again. We may have more absences from each other in the future. But for now, I’m there every day and am glad.

We did get home, just as River was going to receive his evening bottle. He smiled and danced a little happy dance when he saw me. I was able to play with him a bit and then give him his bottle. As I lay with him in a dark room, feeding him his bottle, he smiled up at me as he reached the end. Then he cooed in delight.

Perhaps it was happiness at fullness, warmth and comfort. Or perhaps, as I like to imagine, it was happiness at being in my arms, at feeling the depth of my love for him. In any case, I was happy to be with him. To wrap my arms around him, to see his smile, to feel his velvety pudginess and hear his sweet, high-pitched laugh is enough to calm me until the morning.

1 comment:

Momo Fali said...

When my daughter turned two, my husband and I went on an eight-day, all expenses paid trip to Aruba. My husband had won the vacation at work. I enjoyed almost NONE of that trip because I missed my daughter so much. Sigh. Now that she's 10 years old, I wouldn't mind having that time back!