It is 2:47pm on Halloween afternoon. I sit in my writing room, surrounded by a slew of books and papers. It is drizzling outside. In a few hours, we will take the girls trick-or-treating on my childhood block. We will all go door to door, brownstone to brownstone. I will watch my daughters lose their fists in big bowls of candy and smile.
I will remember.
I will remember my Halloweens as a girl. My costumes: Larrietta Birdetta one year, a referee another, a football player another. There was a definite sports theme. I will remember Mom's chili, hearty and delicious as I eat it tonight. I will remember Dad's spooky humpback whale music. I will remember how my sisters and I spread all of our loot over the wood floor of the enormous green bedroom we shared, the tummy ache that invariably ensued.
Maybe this is a silly thing to say, but I love being a mom particularly on these days. It is hard work, the hardest work, but it brings with it the biggest joys. Just this morning, a friend who has come back into my life and I sat on her sofa, coffees in hand, and we talked about being moms to small kids, how it is messy but also magical. How we can't sweat the small stuff; how the small stuff is it. I told this friend about this amazing hour last night. The girls stripped naked as they love to do and they played with one of those gooey, sticky hands that Little Girl got while trick-or-treating at preschool yesterday. They whipped this little pink thing to the ceiling and it stuck and they squealed. Over and over. Stuck. Squealed. For the better part of an hour. Husband and I sat in the family room and watched them. We couldn't stop beaming at each other, at them. This is it, I thought, I felt, watching the blur of their little bodies, their flipping tangled hair, their bright blue eyes, their endless smiles.
Tonight will be more of the same. I know it. I will watch them and absorb their joy. Their joy is my joy. That's how it works, isn't it?
Anyway, I'm just sitting here feeling so happy and thankful and nostalgic and wanted to come here and write a few words. That's what this place is good for. A little treasure box for the gems I'm collecting.
There are so many.