My newest great-granddaughter is visiting. The grand-daughter of my firstborn, and daughter of his firstborn, my grandson. Eevee is 6 weeks old and of course she brought her mom & dad along. But the show is all about Evelyn Mae.
We are BFF, decided over long talks while lying on the bed. She is just becoming social so I was fascinated and experienced great joy as I watched her work her tongue around struggling to make sounds, and then smiling at me as we gazed into each other’s eyes. At this stage I did most of the talking – in that high sing-songy voice that I reserve only for babies of a certain age. I know this one-sided conversation won’t last forever, and I’m hoping I live long enough to hear her chatter as she is developing her own narrative life story, or herstory.
Eevee’s mom & dad are going out a lot for quality time together while I am available to take care of Eevee. It is a win/win arrangement giving me the opportunity to really get to know her. She is having trouble adjusting to formula so there has been periods of intense, loud protests that bring back my experiences with colicky babies – and how helpless I felt as a young mother. This time I am calmer, probably because I know she will survive, and my worth as a person isn’t wrapped up in making sure she isn’t scarred for life because I can’t take away her discomfort. I like this type of care-giving much better but have to be honest. A part of my calmness comes from knowing that the parents will take over when they get home so I can get a good night’s sleep.
She has captured my heart. I work hard to calm her when she is in distress, and usually she falls asleep. When this happens she molds to my body and we share our warmth. When I experience the joy of that moment I can’t put her down. I look at her and wonder about her future. I marvel at her small, put perfectly formed anatomy. I think of the miracle of all those tiny cells dividing so quickly to make her grow. And I think about how her brain is developing so quickly making her a part of her environment and a social being. She stares so intently at me, at my mouth as I speak to her, and at the features of the room around her.
And I tell her that the world is really amazing. And I love you, Eevee.