Babies and Such

I forgot what it’s like to have a baby in the house, the different smells and sounds. My granddaughter, the one who was a preemie, has come to live with us for a while. Yes, at the age of fifty, my husband and I seem to be starting over. Of course the difference this time is my daughter, granddaughter’s mommy, has moved in too. So, not only did we gain a baby, but we acquired an extra grownup. Thank goodness we never downsized our home.

As I write, this the wonderful bundle is sound to sleep in her chair. The rhythm of her breathing is enough to put me under. Yes, I agreed to watch her during the day while mommy goes back to work. Yes, I do work out of my house. Writing is work, even though many don’t view it as that. But how could I say no? How could I allow someone else, someone that doesn’t even know us, take care of a child I have such a huge investment in? Now there’s a question.

I listen for changes in her breathing just like I did when my others were babies. I hold my breath when she wiggles, praying she doesn’t wake until I finish my thought on in a coherent sentence. Today she did not sleep from seven in the morning until one-thirty in the afternoon. She’s not even three months old and only weighs ten pounds. But she’s alseep right now and all is straight and proper in the world.

The art of writing with one hand while balancing a baby on your shoulder does come back to you. Don’t let anyone tell you it doesn’t. Her little head bobs around and once in a while she leans enough to get a good view of my face. Then, she breaks into a smile. Baby smiles stop me dead in my tracks every time. I can walk away from a novel scene or an important point I was about to write.

One of my children was raised on my lap as I wrote. She’s now nine and loves to read, write, and draw. I take complete credit for that. I can give you one reason why she is a math whiz with scores that goes through the roof. She listened to many of my story drafts and slept nearby just as this little one does.

All week I’ve slowly taken my writing room apart so Mommy and Granddaughter will have a private space. I thought I would mourn this. I wanted this space for so long, but I found I write just as well tucked away in my bedroom that seems to sit high in the trees. I’ve found I am a writer and that means I fall into writing no matter where I am. So, I believe when Virginia Woolfe wrote of a room of one’s own, she spoke <!– /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:””; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”;} span.mceitemhiddenspellword {mso-style-name:mceitemhiddenspellword;} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1;} –>
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metaphorically about that part of our soul that must be closed away so we can create. I believe women can create anywhere. I think of my own grandmother, who never had any true space that wasn’t invaded by us grand kids. She made the most intricately designed baby dresses. What she call handwork was art.

My bundle is still asleep. I look at her and see the future. One day she’ll look at me and see an old woman with white hair and a pink scalp. She remember that closeness even though she might not be able to remember exactly when the bond began. We are the essence of our own lives. Live up guys. Each moment is a hoot.

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