Wednesday, July 27, 2005

A quiet moment..

The two girls are sleeping and Gabe is watching TV..... ahhhhhhh. the quiet. It has been a busy morning here with Mary meeting with a realtor, me running interference with all 4 kids at once (yikes!)
Holding both babies at the same time gives me a new level of wonder and amazement at mamas with twins. The 2 little girls are about 5 months apart in age and are enthralled with one another. They happily grin and coo and wave at one another... FROM A DISTANCE. However, get them both on the floor and the eye poking, face slapping and cries of frustration erupt. Mielle does all the slapping and poking, poor little Peevers squints at her and cranes about trying to avoid the flailing arms of her older cousin. Mielle doesn't mean to HURT her, she just gets so excited to have her within arm's reach that her enthusiasm backfires on us. Given time and many repeated warnings to "be gentle" she has managed to get her hands on her cousin and kiss her quite sweetly. Peevers does not seem to appreciate the difference between a wet open mouthed kiss/squash to the forehead and a wildly waving set of arms. What a patient baby that Peevers is. I am just happy to see them playing together while they still can, as it will become increasing rare for the girls to see one another as the Flannery clan moves away from us.

I find myself enjoying this visit together with a bittersweet taste in my mouth. Knowing my sister will be moving much farther away is hard for me. It is only in the last few years as I have married, gotten pregnant and now had a child that we have really connected as women, and as sisters. Having gone to different households after our parents divorvce and being seperated in age by over 4 years has contributed to our relative lack of closeness before this. I have come to deeply value having her for a mentor and a friend. My concern for myself and my daughter is that once they move away we will see each other so rarely that we will become the kind of "aunts and cousins" that see each other yearly around christmas and then less and less often as the kids grow older and we all become more and more absorbed in our own worlds....

I guess that's normal and natural, I just find myself thinking these things as I watch Quin playing on the steps in the sunshine, such a determined little 2 year old..... absorbed in the doings of a small wiggling caterpiller which she repeatedly picked up squealing to see it curl into a tight ball. Holding it gently in her hand and shouting "OPEN, OPEN UP!" The delight she took it watching it tentatively unroll and begin to crawl about in her grubby little palm was for me laced with a quiver of sadness, thinking of time passing and finding myself confronted by a tall slender girl bearing a resemblance to this small little grublet, but changed irrevocably into a new creature, one with whom I am not intimately connected.

I guess I have become more aware of this phenomenon as I have seen it happen with my own child. She seems to change hourly and those who are not nearby are missing it. I see it in her reactions to extended family members that she has not seen recently. The shy routine, ducking her head down, against my breast when confronted with well meaning, loving family members who reach for her and then quickly return her to my arms as tears fill her eyes and that bottom lip sticks out in all it's quivering glory. As a parent I feel sympathy for her, she doesn't feel comfortable with people she doesn't know well. As a sister, daughter and friend I feel sympathy for the well meaning and loving adult who is being rebuffed in this appalling manner. I see the rejection in their eyes and wish I had some magic answer to give them, but the solution is simple. Spend more time with her. Spend quality time with her. See her often enough that she doesn't "forget "you. Sounds simple, right?
Wrong. We are all of us, very busy people. It is hard to make time for all the people in our lives that we want to be in close regular contact with. Especially while raising children, having careers, teaching others, keeping house and staying sane. I guess that's what worries me about having my sister and her family moving farther is crazy.


At 12:40 PM, Anonymous Jen said...

Ah, yes, the flailing, hitting, and open-mouthed kisses... I'm telling you, Anna, M and T are two peas in a pod. And you're right, we all need to see each other more... my dad's family is just as you described, we never see each other, and Jo's mom was so disappointed when she came to visit and T looked at her so suspiciously... keep blogging, xo J

At 7:13 AM, Blogger Mar said...

Here's your comment girl!

Have I told you lately that YOU ROCK!

Love Ya So!



Post a Comment

<< Home