Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Good Nipple is Hard to Find

No, this isn’t a blog entry about the pros and cons of certain bottle (or human) nipples. Yes, I just thought the title was funny, and Flannery O’Connor, well, her short stories are perfection. Yeah, I said perfection. 
To this day, I can’t read “A Good Man is Hard to Find” without the hairs on my arms standing up, and now that I’ve managed to sneak something literary into this post (insert virtual patting on the back), I’ll drive around the block and enthusiastically wave at the irritated, but hopeful point. (You may remember from an earlier post how much I value digressing.) 
Perhaps I’ve got nipples on the brain because with less than 24 hours notice, Al and I drove to the east side of the state to pick up Ava Harper, the baby girl we hope to adopt. You may think “hope to adopt” sounds strange, but it’s simply a layer of linguistic protection until Ava’s birthmom and birthdad’s parental rights have legally expired, something we’re trying with all our might to keep tucked far, far away in the back of our minds. (November 23 is the date.)
There’s so much to say about what we’ve been through to get us here. I don’t know where to begin or where to end. I just know I need to put something down on paper. Even if I know it probably won’t touch how I’m feeling or how Al is feeling. 
With so much to say and so little time, I’ve decided to talk on the latter. Since the arrival of Ava, time has turned into an even greater mystery. Seconds turn into minutes, minutes turn into hours, hours turn into days, days turn into nights, nights turn into wizards with white beards and purple hats. Rinse and Repeat. Seriously, I can’t understand how I used to complain about not having enough time. Caring for a child, you officially become Time’s bitch. Cross one thing off that to-do list (not including feedings or diaper changes) and you should be awarded Employee of The Month Millennium. (Yes, this should include a commemorative t-shirt, preferably bedazzled organic cotton.) 
If this sounds like I’m whining, well, I guess I am. I don’t think whining is all that unexpected, considering I spent 38 years and 354 days (I think I’m right on the math, but who’s counting?) caring for me, myself and I. (Yes, I care about and care for my husband and dog, too, but babies deserve a category of their own.)
People say blink once and your kid is out of diapers, blink twice and your kid is off to college, blink three times and your kid is mocking your haircut, blink four times and your kid has your haircut. I don’t know who these people are, but I’m sure they’ve said something like that at least a few times. And you know what? These people are right. No, they’re genius. It’s hard to believe Ava is already 1-month-old, and it’s even harder to believe she’s allowed me fifteen minutes to sit here and type. Granted, she’s sort of napping on my chest in a sling, but it’s progress. (Pay no attention to that wet diaper behind the curtain.)
Besides writing, one of the things I should do more in my nonexistent spare time is take vocal lessons, because I’ve been singing a lot more often lately. As it turns out, babies like singing, and they don’t give a rip if you’re way off key. Okay, they might rip one, but they won’t judge you, and shame on you if you judge them. 
Ava has been “enjoying” plenty of Son Volt these days (Trace is one of the CDs I dug out of haphazard stack next to my outdated stereo. I still feel such an immense sense of peace and nostalgia when I listen to that album.) With her in my arms, when I sing “Can you deny, there’s nothing greater, nothing more than the traveling hands of time?” the words mean something entirely, amazingly new. 

Warning: I'm just resting my eyes. 

1 comment:

  1. Time is a magical thing, Chopper, you're right. The trick is savoring the fleeting moments. And by sitting down and writing at this very moment - that's what you've done. Perfect.