Thursday, April 07, 2005

House Rules

Up only for bathroom and shower; meals can be eaten at the table. Otherwise in the bed or in the doctor's office. Non-negotiable: No cooking, No cleaning, No shoppping. Period. And no picking up the boy, regardless of how many times he says "Up, Please!"

More lifting for daddy. Fine by me.

These are the house rules for my wife for at least two weeks, but by then we'll be well into the Promised Land of 34 weeks and even nearing 36, the latter number sounding almost like a magic word. I'm scared to utter it out loud, in fact, for fear of conjuring demons. In any event, if the baby comes after that (it's a girl by the way), well, she can come all she likes, and we'll be ready enough.

But for now, my wife is home, a new kind of normal.

My son comes in from the sandbox and says "Momma Here!" and rushes in for a hug. He is rewarded handsomely by my wife, who claims that he looks so old that he must be ready to apply for college. But he reminds us of his true age by soon refusing to eat his pasta and green beans, then tries a host of tricks to keep from going down for his nap. We (mom, dad, and babysitter) are all wise to him, though, and before long he's talked himself to sleep in his new Big Boy Bed. I'm off to get grapes and mangoes from the fruit seller on Church Street, oddly named "Cleveland Fruits and Vegetables" and run by Asians. (I always want to ask about this strange confluence of facts when I'm in there, but I don't want to spoil the mystery.) The mangoes smell fragrant and give just a little to soft squeezes. Perfect. I see, somewhere, that it's 77 degrees.

Tonight, after nap, more sandbox, and dinner of gooey pizza from that place near the subway, the boy and I take the "Nice Stroller" out for a walk along the Hudson. The wind is asserting itself, chopping up the river, and the boats hop a little as they push up and down along the island. We see the Big Boat and the Yellow Boat, and a scarf of geese rises from one of the park lawns still fenced for the winter, drawing a "Bird! Bird!" right out of him. We go fast down the walkway toward the South Cove and the Winter Garden but turn around because of the wind. After about 20 minutes, we agree to go inside and tell mom what we've seen, because it's almost as if it hasn't happened unless he tells someone he loves. Always the way.

We come in the door and he leans into a "Hi!" for Momma. He can--and does--tell her everything. Because she's home.


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