I’ve been slowly removing items from the back of the car, things I’d thought we might need on our trip to Seattle, and with each box or bag, I’m realizing the car was packed by a crazy woman.
Everything is so haphazard, all of it “almost-there” but not quite, such as: paper plates, but no napkins or cups; winter coats, but no mittens or hats; rain boots, but no socks; cans of pears (Avery’s favorite), but no bowls or spoons.
The list goes on, but you get the idea. The best explanation I have is that in the days before the surgery, I wasn’t really myself. For example, when I got into the car, the driver’s seat, which hadn’t been moved, was no longer in the right position. It felt too low, and too far back. The mirrors were out of whack, too. So I had to make adjustments.
Later in the day, I met my friend Claudia for lunch, which is something we’ve been doing for years, and instead of ordering my usual, which I always, always, do, I absent-mindedly ordered something new. Without even realizing it.
It was as if I were here, but not really here. Hence, the strange packing: trying to anticipate what we might need, while at the same time trying not to think about what was ahead. What we were preparing to confront.
In a similar vein, as I was going through the stack of mail, I opened a package from Mom Central. It was a Baby Einstein “World Music” DVD and CD. I remember agreeing to review them; at the time, I was trying to envision the day when we’d be home, and I thought Avery might like the music. It was a wish, really, sent off into the universe, not unlike magical thinking–if I sign up for this, if they pick me, then it means we will be home, and Avery will be watching the show and listening to the CD.
But? Long ago, we gave away all our Baby Einstein DVDs because of the naughty puppets, who hit each other, and had inspired rounds of brother-bopping at our own house. And I’d forgotten this key point, much in the same way I’d forgotten to pack spoons or socks.
I played the DVD anyway, curious to see what had happened to Baby Einstein in the years we’ve been away from it. I’m sorry to report that the puppets are still naughty, but I have to say, in all fairness, they elicited great belly laughs from Avery (and Bennett and Carter, too), and watching Avery laugh felt so good, so wonderful, that I’m rethinking my position on Baby Einstein. Anything that can make a kid recovering from surgery smile is okay by me. (Here’s the link for Baby Einstein, in case you want to check it out for yourself.)
Avery had his first post-surgery doctor’s appointment yesterday, and I saw again his mended heart, which looks so beautiful to me–strong and sure, pumping away. The right ventricle, which had showed signs of stress and enlargement, has already recovered. And the perfect rhythm of Avery’s new heart sounded like music, a song in 4/4 time, a song with two words repeated over and over again: thank-you, thank-you.
It’s the song of my heart, too.