Oh, I am feeling so lazy, so wonderfully content. Thanksgiving was low-key, private, quiet. Perfect. The only glitch was that Three-year-old had a cold, which is why we didn't go visit my dad in Alabama. She was a preemie--born at 28 weeks--and her lungs have long been a concern. Last year she went through three bouts of pneumonia and was hospitalized twice. So a stubborn knot of fear forms in my gut when I hear the first cough. My dad just kicked a difficult respiratory infection. So, we stayed home, and gradually the fevers and listlessness gave way to a runny nose and impishness.
I turned on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, which I grew up watching every year. Oddly enough, when I actually lived in New York, I never once went. Dear Husband made the Thanksgiving meal. A good thing, too, since my culinary talents are limited to simple baking. He made a fabulous turkey, and I made a carrot ring. When he realized that we had none of the jelled cranberry sauce without which it isn't Thanksgiving, he went to the store and got some for me. Now that's devotion. And he knew better than to try to make one of those fancy fresh cranberry relishes. Uh uh. It has to slurp out of the can. My mom used to do this perfectly, and then serve it in slices. Sigh. For desert we had marshmallows dipped in chocolate. The meal was delicious. Afterwards we all watched The Polar Express (this turned out to be a bit scarier than I expected, given the simplicity of the book, and Five-year-old ended up sleeping on the living room sofa with a light on).
Today, Friday, we put up our Christmas tree. The girls were so excited to look through the ornaments. Five-year-old kept saying, "Oh, do you remember this one?" I remember doing the same thing as a child. Rediscovering the Christmas ornaments was an important ritual, and I can still recall many of them, particularly a set of elves and other characters made with tiny pinecones and pipecleaners. So we found the star Five-year-old made out of popsicle sticks, and the fantastic chandelier ornament Dear Husband found for me, the Noah's ark ornament, and the Bratz ornament (groan).
Later, Dear Husband took healthy Five-year-old out for the evening, and I spent a lovely time romping with Three-year-old. We built cities with blocks, and played with her toy cars, which she likes to stuff in her pockets or her baby doll diaper bag. We cooked pretend food and pretended to be doggies and kitties. Then I tickled her and we rolled around on the floor and giggled a lot. I was overcome by a sense of her "otherness." Because she has some developmental delays, and language has been slow in coming, I've thought of her as a baby for much longer than she has been one. She may not yet have the words for all her questions and frustrations and wonderment, but I think she has the thoughts for them, and I was struck tonight by how much older she is than I think of her.
All of this I have to be thankful for, and more: I am experiencing something that has seemed out of reach--peace, contentment, joy. I feel like a cat in a sunny window.