After being in the Midwest for nearly two and a half weeks, Baby A and I are home. We’re sleeping in our own beds with our friends (his, stuffed; mine, purring) and in separate rooms. And now, it begins—resuming our schedule. So far, he has woken up at 5 AM and slept most of yesterday. I took a two hour nap yesterday and could barely keep my eyes open past 10 PM last night. While all of this is a bit of a PIA, traveling is worth it.
During those 17 days, Alexander was surrounded by people who loved him (and it wasn’t just M and me). He played with other kids for hours. He experienced snow, played with puppies and ate boxed mac n’ cheese. All things that don’t happen in our home. He laughed and laughed and laughed. He made others do the same. And now that we are home, I miss the family, the cold weather, the impromptu dinners, the conversation and the constant playing. I’ll try to keep up with my son’s insatiable appetite for play that was fulfilled by numerous cousins these past couple of weeks. Luckily, I know I can keep him laughing.
This weekend the east is being blanketed with snow and here in Los Angeles it’s close to 80 degrees. It doesn’t look anything like Christmas.
However, Beverly Hills’ Golden Triangle reminds M. and I of Michigan Avenue with the white lights and the festive store fronts so last night we packed up A.’s peeps (Ya-Ya, Papa, M. and I) and went there to walk around. We had a great time chasing A. through the streets of Beverly Hills dodging pedestrians and dogs. He climbed the stairs at Two Rodeo Drive and as he reached the top he was greeted by carolers. Unsure what to do, he ran past them clapping, then stopped, turned around and walked to a spot in front of them where he decided to stand for the next 20 minutes.
Now, I haven’t seen carolers in a while. But I knelt there with my son and listened to this quartet sing holiday music—about peace on earth, goodwill towards men and visiting relatives’ homes. I enjoyed watching his grandparents interact with him as he clapped and danced to the music. (Jingle Bells was his favorite, probably because it is the melody Elmo sings at the end of his segment.)
But most of all, as we watched the carolers sing underneath the towering Christmas tree, it felt like the holiday season to me. It’s a feeling I haven’t enjoyed for a long time, and I am so glad that I found it.
For the last week, our house has been grandparent haven. First, my mom came to visit Baby A and then my father-in-law came to help take care of him as I flew to DC. He just left and the house seems a bit quieter but not in a good way.
My FIL has a great energy to him when he’s with Baby A. Honestly, the kid eats it up—following him around the house, giggling at him, and looking for him when he’s gone. My son’s relationship with is Ya-Ya (Greek for grandma) is different. While FIL is more the rough-houser, she takes care of him. Granted she plays with him, but she’s a care-taker first. Either way, they give M and me a break.
No matter what their relationship is with Baby A, I’m glad they have one. I lost my grandma and my Nono (Italian for grandpa) when I was very young and had a bit of a strained one with my Nona (Italian for grandma). These relationships were important to me and I hope that as Baby A grows older he appreciates them.