Sunday, November 24, 2013

It all melts away

Sunset from the Hudson River Esplanade, NYC  |  "It all melts away" on http://www.afeatherynest.blogspot.com
The only thing on my mind when the plane took off last week was: 5 more hours until I land in NYC and head straight to the apartment for a hot shower and a long, long nap. As soon as the plane hit the runway stateside, I was unbuckling my belt, reaching for my bag and waiting for my phone to turn on so I could call the car service and let them know I was ready to be picked up ASAP.

But placing an outgoing call was made impossible by the phalanx of messages descending on my phone. From one and a half hours previously, my sister-in-law, who returned from Europe a month ago, was heading to the hospital for an emergency c-section. From 30 minutes after, my nephew and godson was safely delivered a few weeks early and both he and his mother were well. And from 15 minutes after that, my brother was boarding a flight across the ocean and headed home.

When I finally got through all the messages I called my mom to ask where she was and where I should go. Then my brother called, heavily emotional and nearly out of his mind with worry and regret. He had been in an intense meeting when he got the message and rushed out and straight to the airport and was now waiting on the far end of an 8-hour flight to get home to see his wife and meet his newborn son.

As soon as I made it through customs I headed the hour and a half east to a hospital on Long Island, instead of the forty minutes west to Manhattan and home. My mom and I arrived about 4 hours after the delivery and my sister-in-law was awake and feeling fairly well, considering the turn her day took after a routine doctor's check that morning. We were alone with her until she buzzed the nurse to wheel in my brother's son and when I saw his completely full head of hair at the top of the bassinet I started shaking uncontrollably. My mom was all smiles and coos and scooped him up, but it was all I could do to grasp my hands under my chin to quell their quivering and just grin madly through happy tears at his sweet, sweet face.

True, I'm biased, but this baby is all delicious puppy-like limbs and dark, dreamy hair and huge almond eyes, that when he's awake, follow the sound of our voices, looking at once like he's slightly rolling his eyes at our gushing or perhaps just taking us all in slowly.

And in that afternoon with him, I realized what people mean when they say a baby changes everything. What's funny is that I thought it was only your own baby that changes everything, but seeing this piece of my brother murmuring and mewling to himself affected me in a way I never expected. I felt so peaceful staring at him, smoothing his winged hair back, caressing his cheek with my pinky. Being there instead of, or without, my brother perhaps made it even more remarkable. But all my wariness and exhaustion from the week before floated off and away from me. Any murky, fuzzy, less-than-happy thoughts batting about my mind evaporated. The only thing that mattered to me was holding this baby bird of an infant close to my heart and telling him how much I already loved him.

One year ago: Milkman nostalgia and Being gentle with myself and A good thing

10 comments :

  1. Such a blessing - this little gift which brings you and R and your mother and FB and so many into the present (which is such a hard place to find for people like us to find). Enjoy every minute of it. xoxox

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    1. A hard place indeed, but definitely soaking up as much of his gurgly baby goodness as I can! Thanks, dear :).

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  2. Awww, J. What a great post. Congrats to you and your family! xoxo

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  3. congratulations!!! - it's really something that cannot be explained, but felt... so happy for you!

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    1. You're absolutely right! And what a good thing it is to feel :). Thanks, M!

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  4. Congratulations...! babies are WONDERFUL! Congrats to the new parents, grandparents and auntie and uncle!

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    1. Thanks very much, Alla! They certainly are (and scrumptious and adorable and teensy weensy!). :)

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  5. huge congrats and hugs. such a joyful time.

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    1. Perfect way to describe, indeed a joyful time! Thanks, dear!

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Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a note!

XOXO,
J.