Tuesday, February 7, 2012

One small change

Since we moved here, in our bedroom, instead of curtains covering the sliding glass doors that lead out to the deck, there were dark wooden shudders that opened and closed, for privacy. They were really nice. All these years, I loved them. And then last week, the slats started falling out, and they looked terrible, and we planned to take them down, and repair them. But one day turned into the next, and still, they stood. Slat after slat, falling down. It looked awful.

Friday, we went to Target to pick up a few things. I took a detour through the curtain and drapery aisles. Let me see how much some drapes cost, I thought to myself. David and I looked through some of them. Many were gaudy. A few nice, but out of our "non-budget". Then David took out a light blue sheer. It is embroidered with a small floral pattern. It reminds me of an Indian design. They were pretty. And on clearance!

We never buy stuff to redecorate our house with. We replace as things get worn and broken, but we just don't have extra money to buy things to spruce up the place. Believe me, I stare longingly at beautiful throw pillows all of the time, but it ain't gonna happen, so I make due with what we have. These curtains were on clearance. They were $9.00 per panel. We needed two. I OK'd the purchase, in the name of replacement.

And what a difference it has made. One little change, and Voila!, our bedroom looks bigger, and oh so pretty. After we put them up, I told David to take down the matchstick blinds in the kitchen, and put them under the new curtains. It looks so nice. I kept stopping by the doorway, and pausing, to admire it. But then I thought, the room is yucky. I have to clean it from corner to corner. So, the entire day on Saturday, from morning until dinner, I vacuumed every corner. I removed everything under the bed, and got under there. And by doing so, found a big blue Tiffany box, that was from a wedding gift. And inside of that, were photos of the girls that I have not looked at in years. Years!

Some of them I had totally forgotten about. Some made me so sad. Sad how quickly time has gone by, and how some of those years, especially when Olivia was a baby, I was so stressed, and depressed. How I rushed her babyhood. Always looking for the next milestone to be reached. Never enjoying the baby before me. I found my wedding invitations. I over-ordered, and was left with so many extra. I smiled remembering the day I ordered them, and the night I addressed them. I found the portable crib under there. It is missing pieces, so out to the curb it went Monday. Along with the wooden doors.

When we pulled out of the driveway yesterday morning, there they both were, next to the cans. My heart skipped a bit. I thought of my little baby, lying in that crib. I insisted we get one, thinking we would be visiting friends and family with our newborn, and would surely need a crib, everywhere we went. Honestly, I think Liv slept in it, maybe three times. And the traveling....not so much.

Friday night, I took Olivia to her first school dance. She will be 9 in May. I watched her as we arrived. She seemed awkward, and nervous. Not many of her friends had arrived yet. But soon, one by one filed in. And she was off. Dancing for two hours straight. Her cheeks were flushed. I took some pictures of her dancing. She was smiling the entire time.

As we drove home, I told her how much I loved her. How proud I am to be her mother. What a remarkable person I think she is. I told her about my night with her in the hospital. When she was a newborn. I had a C-section, so I stayed there 4 days. The first night was a blur. After nearly 24 hours of horrendous labor, they rushed me into the operating room. I was in a bit of a morphine phase for 48 hours, but the third night, was most magical.

I felt better. I was alert. I was cleaned up, and even brushed my hair. Everyone had gone home. It was late, but I was wide awake. And so was tiny Olivia, squirming around in her swaddled blanket, laying in her clear plastic bed. I got up, and looked at her, and it was the first moment I realized she was mine. I scooped her up, and laid her on the bed. I changed her diaper, and talked to her the whole time. I wrapped her up tight, and got into bed with her. And we just stared at each other. And I know she was listening to me. I nursed her, and we both fell asleep together. She stayed in my arms all night, and each time she woke up, I felt happy to tend to her needs. I felt something I had never felt before. There isn't a word for it, really.

She was smiling in the back seat of the car, as we drove home, listening to me tell her about that night. The night I fell in love with her. The night my life began, all over again. I have pictures. And remnants of who they were. How small they started out as. But really, those things will change, each and every day. Never the same. Seeing my shudders, and that crib at the curb made me want to cry. If I could just go back in time. How one day, melts into another, and seems the same, but never is.

One small change. Yet, time is changed. And never the same.


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