To my great relief, all signs are pointing to the happy possibility that Lucia will not be scarred for life by this extended separation (or by her delayed birthday celebration). So I thought I would devote a post to how brave and flexible she’s proven to be over the past few weeks. I expected her visits here to be wary, tearful affairs, but they have proven to be anything but. I usually hear her saying “Hi! Hi!” before she even comes into the room, and she eagerly hugs me hello—then heads straight for the huge bag of books, coloring books, and markers we keep here. She generally sits right down in my lap for a reading of our favorite hospital book, Kitten’s Winter. She has a set of little medicine-dosage cups she always plays with for a few minutes, and she generally indulges in many, many snacks—usually a bagel and/or muffin that Andrew and Mom get on their way over.
On the days when I don’t have a roommate, she loves to run around the room-dividing curtain, hiding and then reappearing at either end with a big grin. She likes to sit underneath the wheely hospital-bed table, in the U-shaped area where the wheels are attached. She calls it her boat. She likes to walk on the wheel-covering bar, using it like a balance beam. And we always finish off the visit with a few Elmo videos on my computer. Then she gets a chocolate-chip cookie for the journey home. (The cookie, to be honest, is bribery that works splendidly, letting us get her shoes on and get her strapped back into the stroller.)
“Bye bye,” she always says with a wave, and she’s started giving me big hugs and kisses before she leaves, too. No tears for her. There have been many tears from me, though it’s getting better. Andrew said that when he says it’s time to go visit Mama, Lucia says seriously, “Mama cry.”
At home she seems to be as happy, playful, and active as ever. She sometimes seems confused at bedtime—should Grandma give the bottle? should Daddy?—and she’s done her share of testing (Surely Daddy will let me take this armload of toys into the crib tonight…) but otherwise she seems to have adapted to her new circumstances with nary a blip.
Ten days till delivery. Brave and grown-up as Lucia’s proven herself to be, I can’t wait to get home and resume our old ways. I never thought I’d miss fielding her endless requests for “Snack! Snack!” and cleaning up said snack in her wake…but it’s my job to refill those little bowls with bunnies and Cheerios and raisins and fruit, and I’m itching to get back to it.