Another departure by the kids, another session of bawling our eyes out.
On the day that they were leaving, we all went out to dinner at On The Border (Mexican food). They packed up their car beforehand so they could leave directly from the restaurant. We laughed, and talked all over each other, and I stuck the camcorder in everyone’s faces (again). Calvin and Michael fought over the bill (how weird is that?), and all of a sudden it was over.
The ride home was very silent, with me sniffling in the front seat, and Marie sniffling in the back seat (and Marie’s boyfriend probably feeling a mite uncomfy as he held her hand), and Calvin looking like someone ran over his dog right in front of him. Then home, where Marie rushed upstairs and Calvin and I just hugged each other, in the dark, in the bedroom. Then we went upstairs and hunted up Marie to hug. Then we walked down to get the mail, and I stopped in the middle of the sidewalk for some fresh bawling.
The fucked up part about it is that it seems so *wrong* that they live anywhere other than right in our hip pocket. There’s the kind of “normal” that we have when they’re gone, and there’s the kind of “normal” that we have when they’re home. The transition is always easy when they come home, and painful when they leave. And, with the possibility of Michael shipping out in September, there’s always the thought, “What if this is the last time we see him?” Which is the one that had me flipping out on the sidewalk. It seems incredible to me that Michael could be sent to a place, under circumstances that we couldn’t even imagine, experiencing things that we can’t protect him from. Lilly’s safe, for now, due to her pregnancy. But Michael might be on the next deployment out to the “sandbox”. I don’t even want to think about it.
It’s just so easy, having them home. Sure, most parents put up this act that they tout out at the suggestion of their adult kids moving back home, like it’s some sort of tragedy or major inconvenience. But seriously, the six of us staying under one roof is a lot of fun. There’s nothing the members of our family like better than sitting around (or standing around, in the kitchen) and gabbing. Marie and Michael quickly got into their old habits of incessant teasing – the shrieking coming from upstairs transported us immediatly back three years to Michael’s senior year in high school. Calvin turned to me and said, “Gee, didn’t miss that, huh?”
Anthony is such a good baby that the ONLY TIME he fusses is when there’s something to fuss about – hungry, dirty diaper, or teething. He is such a joy to pass around among us, taking turns entertaining him and making sure he doesn’t thunk his head on the tile floor. Calvin and I watched him a few times while the kids went out to take advantage of us built-in babysitters. Adding to my claim that Calvin knows how to do *everything* is the expert way that he handled the baby. Of course, he had plenty of practice with Michael and Marie, but I never got to see him do it. Am I the only one who thinks that a man caring for a little baby is incredibly sexy?
Anthony seems to want to skip crawling altogether, and go straight to standing and walking. He does this push-up thing where he props himself up on his hands feet, rocks forward a bit like he’s trying to crab-walk, then rolls over and lands sitting upright on his bum. He’ll go around in circles like this, making no forward progress and not quite getting the concept of crawling on his hands and knees. The knees never enter the picture, he insists on using his feet. He gets really frustrated when the cat is over there and he’s over here and he wants to be where the cat is right now. The cat, on the other hand, is glad to have five solid minutes of warning as he views Anthony’s limited progress across the floor, only to casually slink away as soon as the baby gets within arm’s reach. Oh. OH, the face that baby makes then!
So, yes, it was a lovely visit. We ate TONS and drove around sightseeing (for Lilly’s sake), and had Calvin’s parents and grandparents over for a get-together on Sunday afternoon. Here are the remaining pictures, just a few snapped on the last day they were here.
I have plenty of video footage, and I still have the aspirations of figuring out how to make and post movies ala Rob. Some day, when I have more than two minutes to spare.
I love our family. Have I mentioned that lately?