Saturday was one of those rare, perfect days. We don’t really plan for them, because the weather-person is generally wrong. But this past Saturday, perfect: very sunny, warm but not hot, no humidity, minimal itching going on in my EN&T. We generally get about five days a year like that, and we’re lucky if even one of them falls on a Saturday. This one did.
Seeing that the Baby Booty Warehouse Shopping was not going to happen, we spent a few minutes doing our best impression of Disney’s Jungle Book vultures.
“Whadda you wanna do?”
“I dunno. Whadda you wanna do?”
We quickly decided to buy dirt. Well, mulch, actually, but still . . . who knew dirt could cost so much? But it does, and it did, and we got it anyway. Thank goodness for same-day delivery.
Our backyard looked like we must have at least eleven hound dogs living under our deck — eleven hound dogs who come out only to rip up the landscaping and dig big, comfy holes where the flora and fauna used to be. We don’t. We have just one St. Bernard, one chow mix (who actually does like to hang out under the deck) and one terrier/road kill mix. Ahhh, the damage they do.
So we got the dirt. We spent the day ripping out what was left of the old landscaping (mostly ivy), filling in the holes, saving some of the landscaping to replant, and mulching everything. It was perfect. Perfect.
I can’t begin to describe it: the peace that comes from working the earth, from not having kids whining all day (I do NOT know how that happened!), from working together with your spouse on a project, from just being in the sun, from watching everyone have a good time, from being able to this all without sweating like a pig. Perfect.
While the girls mostly ran back and forth between our yard and the neighbor’s yard, Tank Boy hung out with us. He was all snazzed up in his farmer duds, trotting everywhere McH went, telling us what a “duper duper good boy helper” he was being. And he was. There was just something about watching my son digging happily in the dirt with his little green shovel, filling up the wheelbarrow, helping empty the wheelbarrow, and taking alligator (his word for Gatorade) breaks with his dad, that was perfect. Perfect. As they say, my heart took a picture.
So did my camera, obviously. You’ll just have to trust that my heart did a better job of it.
As I thoroughly savored this day, I kept thinking, “I wish his birth mother could be here to see him right now.” I really, really wish I could have shared it all with her. I admit I do not think of her terribly often, but on this perfect day I did.
Did I feel guilty that she was missing this experience? No. No, the circumstances and decisions leading up to his adoption were not my doing, nor were they my responsibility, so I have no guilt that she missed out on this perfect day. However, if I’d had the choice, I would have loved to share it with her. I wish she could have seen his sheer joy and contentment as he moved dirt all day. I wish she could have heard the pride in his voice as he realized what a helper he was being. I wish she could have laughed along side me each time he asked for an “alligator.” I wish she could see how happy he is, how O.K. he is, how much he loves his dad (well, and me, but he’s really a daddy’s boy), and how much we all love him. I wish she could see all of the progress he’s made this past year as he’s turned from a screaming, thrashing, head-banging, biting boy into a “duper duper good boy”. Not that he’s perfect, but oh he is so much better.
My mother-heart wanted to reach out to his birth mother and say, “Look, see! He’s fine. He’s wonderful. He’s happy,” because I’m sure she thinks of him and wonders. It is difficult to put into words. I wasn’t feeling sadness for her but, rather, I was feeling joy for him, because of him, and I wished I could share that with her and thank her for bringing him into my life and contributing to this perfect day.
And George, if you’re out there, Tewt the Newt says hello.