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Grand Memory

400-04286209Our home is quiet this week.  Much too quiet after last week’s visit from our two Grands who live an airplane ride away.  Neil, 3 ½ months old, and his mother and his older brother visited so that Neil could meet his Tennessee relatives.  And his relatives – great-grandmother, cousins, aunts, uncles- gathered to welcome him.

Three and a half months old.  Is there an age that a baby is sweeter or more cooperative? Neil smiled and giggled and let us pass him from one set of arms to another.  When he lay on the floor on a quilt, he stayed put and watched.  He sat happily in a bouncy seat while we ate meals.  Of course, his mother made sure he stayed happy because he wore a clean, dry diaper and slept when he was tired and ate when he was hungry.

I had to sneak him away a few times to have some just Neil and me moments.  When Neil’s mother said, “He really needs a bath,” I quickly volunteered.  I hauled out my giant commercial size stainless steel bowl, lined it with a bath towel, and tested the water temperature until it was perfect.  Exactly baby-bath warm.

Neil, wearing only a diaper, lay wrapped in his blanket on my kitchen counter.  I placed my arms along his sides, and, with my face just inches from his, I sang a silly made-up song to the tune of ‘The Farmer in the Dell.’  “We’re going to take a bath…” He smiled and kicked.  As I eased his naked bottom and legs into the water, his arms flung outward.  I held his upper body securely, under his back, and smiled.  “Oh, nice warm water,” I said.  He relaxed, body limp.

As I gently rubbed his body with a soapy washcloth, I remembered the days when I bathed my own babies.  Did I cherish those minutes or was bathing my babies a chore?  Neil’s eyes followed my hand as I poured handfuls of water over his tummy, his legs, his arms.  His fussy cry let me know he didn’t like water on his head.  And I didn’t like water splashed on my face when he kicked his feet.  “Bath time is over,” I said.

I wrapped Neil in the softest towel we own, carried him into my bedroom, laid him on my bed, and quickly diapered him.  I sang,  “La, la, la, la, la….” He giggled, waved his arms and kicked and cooed – ohs and ahs – as only a baby can.  And then he blew a bubble and we both laughed.  I took pictures – just in case I ever forget that sweet, happy time.

As I gently massaged his body with lotion, Neil lay completely still, relaxed.  As I struggled to pull his shirt over his head and get his arms through the shirtsleeves, he fussed.  Finally dressed, he lay on his back in the middle of my bed.  I walked from side to side of the bed straightening the bed spread, and he arched his back and turned onto his side to see me.  When I sat beside him and told him how much I love him, he grinned, kicked his legs, and waved his arms.  A perfect response.

The memories, both mental and digital, must tie me over until next time.  I’m booking an airplane ride to be sure a visit is in the near future.




One Response

  1. So sweet, Susan. Those moments are so fleeting.

    Sent from my iPhone



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