I’ve accomplished something amazing. I’ve survived another weekend in New Jersey with a dog, a baby, and a husband busy all weekend working on his dad’s house. I don't know if it's the painting and cleaning they've been doing or the obvious joy Ellie gives Grampy Yeh (Ojiisaan) but the trips have gotten a little easier. Or it's the fact that we're only able to go one more time before we move. Yep. That definitely helps.
Suddenly though I find myself looking around and realize she won't be surrounded by the love of her aunts and her Ojiisaan soon and that's too bad. She sits in the center of attention of her family right now where every coo, laugh, and dropped cheerio are met with rapt attention and amazed laughter. It was Easter this past weekend, usually a time when mom and I would splurge on new outfits for Easter Sunday service. I miss my own family more on holidays that's a given, especially with a baby but I will miss my 'new' family too.
Family is important to me, and to keep those ties long distance isn't easy. Especially when I’ve got two teenage kids back home in Canada that I love and miss like a mama misses her cubs (even though they’re getting too old to be considered cubs and I’m not technically their mama). My heart doesn’t understand the technicality and it makes me really sad they won’t be able to be big sis and bro to my little Ellie. Not to mention aging parents (well, you are!!) who should have my help now more than ever and a brother with two kids of his own I never see anymore.
I am missing out on birthdays, anniversaries, graduations (graduations!!! So proud) but Ellie will be the one who is really missing out on all that extra love and attention both from my family back home (natural and adopted) and her paternal side of the family. (What!? She SAT UP!? AMAZING! Incredible! Look she's SMILING! She just WAVED at us!) What kid doesn't lap that up like the sweet honey that it is? Families are full of stings and hard work and uncertainty but the love that binds us no matter where we are from or what sort of family we belong to is the same. It's the salt in the ocean, the wick in the candle, and I will miss them, all of them.
In a totally unrelated aside, April is National Poetry Month. I wrote this after Bill cooked me his Tofu soup for the first time. Here you go…
Bill’s Tofu Soup
I’m in a war with my hubbie
Over eye-balls in my soup.
I’m in a battle with my love
Over shrimp eyes in my lunch.
Today is a Wednesday and what will it bring?
I’m in a ceasefire status with my mate, my match,
Over eye-balls in my soup.
I was almost to the end before I saw the gleam
of tiny little eyeballs floating in my soup.
They were black and round and mushy
he insists they taste terrific.
They stared at me in horror and I back in shock
I’m sorry little shrimp, I’d rather you were a rock
That was the end of Bill’s Tofu soup for me
I’m sorry little shrimp, while I ate you I hope you didn’t see.