Excuse me, but I think I just missed about three years of blogging for MealBaby. My sweet baby Sailor who was only just born in my last post (and for whom my friend brought me the awesome meal delivery box that my last post was about) is just a few months shy of turning three. She is a joyful stubborn soul who changes clothes a dozen times a day, with mismatched bathing suits being a top choice of dress. I’m so happy Sailor can dress herself that I try not to mind the fact that her floor is always littered with clothes. No more diapers, no more high chair, no more crib, and no more babies on the way.
What a lot to celebrate and to grieve at the same time. From newborn to three, just like that.
And what a lot can happen in three years. Can you imagine how many babies have been born in the last three years? How many meals we’ve all cooked? How many texts we’ve sent to check in with people? How many sunsets we’ve seen (or missed)? How many times we’ve made up our beds or made up our minds? How many books we’ve read? How many rainy days we’ve had or how much sunshine? How many times we, or our kids, have been sick in the last three years?
Sickness in summer is not a happy time. I don’t expect my kids to get sick in summer, but occasionally they do. My eight-year old son Cash spent an entire day in bed recently because he wasn’t feeling well. Sometimes our bodies make us do that, no matter how much our minds disagree. We work hard and play hard and life is breezing along merrily, and then the dreaded middle-of-the-night wake up call. I have learned that with each such occurrence, we again get to practice surrender. Surrender of sleep, surrender of plans, surrender of perfection, surrender of being in control.
My favorite writer, Anne Lamott, talks a lot in her writing about control not being her strong suit. I recently finished reading Lamott’s latest book Hallelujah Anyway, in which she shares a short, but powerful, quote from a guru.
If only I could not mind what happens, too, then I think perhaps it wouldn’t throw me for such a loop when things like no naps and sickness and inclement weather and spilled water glasses and faulty electronics happen. These are parts of the same life that gives us rainbows and watermelons and waterskiing and birthdays and fire pits and writers like Anne Lamott. There are the hard things like night after night of no sleep because of tiny human beings who’ve been among us for mere weeks, and there are the hard things like friends in recovery from chemo or friends whose husbands leave or friends whose daughter passes. These last hard things put a rainy day and an eight-year old’s sickness in perspective. They also remind me that the little stuff of life is training us for when we have to face the big stuff.
Life is not peaches and cream, but life has peaches and cream in it. Life has MealBaby in it. Life has people who love us and will bring us food when we need it. Life has room to start over and start again, even three years later. Though I never intended to take such a long hiatus from giving attention to MealBaby, here we are. The world is still going, the breeze is still blowing, the babies are growing, my mind is overflowing, the meal recipients are knowing: Somebody cares and somebody is making you a meal, baby!
For more of Ginger’s musings on MealBaby, recipes, Anne Lamott, writing, and the minutiae of life, visit gingerfriesen.com.