Mississippi, 5 am
I am tired. And grateful. And in love with my little family.
Our minor triumph? We’ve survived Lily’s first cold.
Last night, the three of us (minus our exhausted pup, who opted to sleep through the excitement) sat in our steamy bathroom while poor Little Babe coughed and sniffled and snorted. Dmitri told me funny and inappropriate jokes while I tried to nurse our stuffy girl. She finally fell asleep again, and eventually my sweet husband did, too. I, however, was too busy imagining that she had stopped breathing or was choking or had suddenly spiked a really high fever. None of these things happened, but if, at 2 am, you would have tried to talk me out of believing that my staying awake could prevent any and all disasters, I would have called you a crazy and irrational control freak.
This morning, Lily feels better and I feel less neurotic, because daylight and coffee are already working their special magic. Soon, Dmitri will stumble out of bed and into the kitchen. He will kiss Lily and squeeze my shoulder and grab a mug from the cabinet, and he will half-smile and say, rough night, huh? and I will agree, rough night.
We are tired, of course we are tired. But I am happy, and my heart is full, because last night, in our tiny bathroom, we were somebody’s parents. And even though we have both wondered– separately, silently, together, out loud– if we are indeed capable of doing this most important job well, this morning I am hopeful. Because, last night, we did.
Here in Mississippi, on a naval base, on the day before Lily’s first Thanksgiving, we are too many miles away from too many people that we love. I know that tomorrow will be bittersweet, and I know that we will probably still be tired, and I know that this particular combination will probably make me cry—but only briefly– when my mom calls in the morning.
But today, I am grateful.
We are parents.
And I am in love with my little family.