Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sweet Caroline

Uncle Matt with his nephews.

Heather, Caroline, and Aunt Becky.

Heather and Caroline.

It was the first time we'd met, so I felt like introductions were in order.

"I'm Aunt Becky," I said.

She didn't reply, nod, or even wake up. I suppose that's to be expected; she is only two weeks old.

Caroline, my new niece, dozed in my arms. She was bundled in a pink, fuzzy blanket, exposing only her cherub face. Her entire body measured the length of my forearms. Fuzzy black hairs crowned her head. Were my kids ever this little, I wondered?

After a few cuddles, Heather suggested an outing to the Cincinnati IKEA...just the girls. Sold! Within minutes, we were eyeing $3 tupperware and $4 bathmats. Little Caroline continued to doze in the confines of her car seat, too young to dig shopping as much as her aunt and mother.

As we browsed the housewares and linens, Heather and I had an opportunity to discuss motherhood. She shared how desperately she wanted little Caroline. Now, the reality of raising two young children has left her feeling a little batty at times. I thought how her words summed up the ultimate paradox of motherhood: the same children we love more than anything can drive us nuts like no other.

We made our visit short, and I left with Heather feeding a baby and Matt chasing a toddler. I know they'll make it through the frenzied weeks with a newborn; I just hope the find the time to enjoy it.

One day, they'll miss it!

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