10-9-10 all he wants is the earth. we had finished making our purchase of some new books and a new blank journal book for mama, and were leaving the bookstore. tug tug tug. “i need an earf…” then louder, and harder TUG TUG TUG “i NEED an EARF, mama!” hmm. “um, ok honey, can you show me what it is that you need?” yes. he leads me not-so-patiently over to the shelf of knick knacks in the bookstore, and points to a little note-holder device, the kind with the little alligator clip to hold a photo or a message. this one happened to have a base that was a miniature replica of earth. i handed him a $5 and he made his purchase. outside, i asked what he wanted to do with his new earth. “oh, i don’t know. maybe mail it to a girl.” then: “or maybe mail it to dada.” in the end, he did give it to his dad, after instructing me to write exactly the message he dictated, and instructing me NOT to put a photo of the two of them in it, that is not a good idea, mama. we taped that photo, instead, to the outside of the package after he wrapped it, using tissue paper and copious amounts of scotch tape (his new favorite item). the message says (in case you have a hard time deciphering his required font size): “love, quinn. i’m always thinking of you, dada.”
if there is one thing i think i have done right in this whole separation/coparenting ordeal, it is that i have never wavered on encouraging his love for his dad. although it is not a feeling i share anymore, i completely celebrate what a wonderful loving boy he is, and do my best to pave the way for him to keep the love flowing. it’s worth all 375 pennies.
10-10-10 riding in the shopping cart (the gargantuan car-simulating shopping cart i once swore i would never use and now use exclusively), quinn informs me regularly that he wishes for “another little guy” that he could have riding next to him, in the other seat. did i mention the gargantuan-ness? these are double-wide carts, so two small children can each have a steering wheel, as the poor parent struggles to maneuver the massive wheel squeaking groaning beast between the pitying stares of the other shoppers. being double wides, the car carts are equipped with two seatbelts. quinn is religious about his use of the seatbelts in shopping carts- to the point that on sunday we had to maneuver one seatbelt-less gargantuan cart over to one side of the cart area, in order to obtain one with working belts. he gets situated and clipped in, over to one side of it, then notices the empty space beside him. it is the one space during his days, where i think quinn feels his only-childness keenly. he’d like another little guy, that he could help strap in, who could drive me around the supermarket, side by side with him. “maybe like a baby.”
i am not in a place in life where i can foresee ever having more children, what with one thing and another (oh you know, lack of a mate, too many occupations, feeling at times like parenting one is already maxing me out, the fact that my first born came out at a whopping 11 pounds and 15 ounces and goodness knows how big a second child would attempt to be! um, ow! and the whole reality of bringing another life into the world is in so many ways too daunting to contemplate right now….) however, i can totally relate to the desire for a sibling. i ached for a sister. i never got one- well, not until i adopted my own later in life. but it wasn’t to be in my family of origin, i was to remain a girl sandwich (brother on either side of me) and you know what? i think it’s great and i’m glad, and i can point to many ways it made me a unique and strong woman. we can experience such longings, and still end up appreciating exactly what life had in store for us. i cannot guess whether quinn will ever have a sibling, but i can relate to his feelings. and i feel such joy at hearing the way he speaks of it- it’s a desire, but he’s not upset about it, and he doesn’t seem impatient. he is a guy who knows what he wants, but he can hang with what is, just as well. oh, my little man. these are the every day moments that i wish to snatch up as they flow by in the unstoppable current, to pin them to the banks for just a moment and look at them and marvel.