And... I'm back!
It's been a couple of weeks since I did anything "real" on here. I've been in CA for the last four days; impromptu and not "for fun," but because I had a little sister who needed her big sister and I was happy to do it.
It wasn't all serious business, there was some fun involved. Like watching hours and hours of cable. Reading uninterrupted. Getting lost in the hills of San Francisco. Breaking the law (just like a real hick: I held my cell phone to my ear - oops!!). Fancy fish n' chips with wasabi mayo. I got to reconnect with the idiots that are the "real housewives of Orange County" again and Rose, Blanche, Dorothy, and Sophia.
In addition to the business and the fun, I got fucking sick. First time in 4 and a half years. Yep. Fever, chills, headache, sore throat, the works. Now that I'm home I'm still a little hungover from the illness. My ears aren't clear, my throat is raw, my head is still tight and I have a strange, dry cough that won't leave me alone. It hasn't robbed me of the will to clean, wipe butts, or go to Target, though. So that's good.
Being away from my baby for four days was immensely less traumatic than I thought it would be - for me, of course. I wasn't worried about Hollis. Anthony is incredibly competent as a parent (and he promised to read my "Notes for Diddy" I'd left behind). But I was worried about how I'd react. The first few hours were a little emotional for me, I have to be honest. Anthony shot out some really cute pictures of Hollis "cleaning" the house and when Gabby showed them to me tears sprang from my eyes.
"He's ok, Jessie. It's good for him!" she says to me sweetly.
"I know! It's good for him, it's good for Anthony, it's good for me! But I can't help it! It makes me cry!"
I wonder what strange mechanism it was inside of me that made me weepy for about 8 hours on Monday. I toughened up after that. Nary a tear or sniffle was on deck when I talked to Hollis on the phone and I knew he was giving me special deference only a 15 month old can by waving at the phone and shouting "da da!!" at it... then blithely walking away to pull a potted plant off of the nearest table.
I got really used to only having to think of myself (well, and my sister, but she doesn't need me to check her diaper or make sure she doesn't stab a fork into an outlet given the chance so it's different than thinking of Hollis). Was I hungry, cold, in pain, tired, bored? It was so simple!
And it was such a relief to know that Anthony was here at home and that I really, truly, with every fiber of my being, TRUST him to do the job I do every day. How often can you say that about someone who's filling your shoes while you're gone? And I can't think of a higher compliment to give him, either. He does things a little differently, of course, his style is more gentle, more laid back (like him), but he remained consistent and I think that worked wonders.
On my way home, taxiing to the runway in San Francisco, I was contemplative. Traveling alone made me feel light and streamlined. I am 33 years old, but don't feel it. I feel at once 100 years old and 20. I saw 25 kids waiting for their plane, shoulder to shoulder and not talking because every one of them was on their sticker-plastered-Mac and I feel like I'm having an out of body experience seeing myself through their eyes: old, a grown woman, clueless, an "adult." I don't mind it so much, I'm happy to be a wife and mother and all grown up: be done with all the bullshit he said/she said/does he like me?/does he not like me? Then I'm ashamed to think I'm still just like them because I haven't been able to shake the body issues handed to me (and sadly accepted with no questions asked on my part) that plague me daily, hourly, practically by the fucking minute.
There was a particular moment during taxi in Denver where we crossed a landing strip. The track ended at what looked like the base of the snow-capped Rockies, a yellow line split it right down the center ending where I sat on the Air Bus. It was quiet. And momentous. I felt impaled by what I saw through my window. I thought about taking a picture, but decided against it. It's better left to the imagination, even mine. We hovered there for less than a minute, my eyes unwavering on the sight before me, and then we moved on.