You were a great baby. You slept soundly and for long stretches. You napped like a dream. You ate like a champ. You smiled constantly and laughed at the drop of a hat. You were a really happy baby.
On one rare night you had trouble sleeping. You were having a growth spurt, you were teething, and you had a cold – the miserable baby trifecta. You just kept crying and whimpering and there was nothing I could do for you that was not already being done. You were changed, you were fed, the humidifier was pumping, and you were appropriately medicated. I was at a loss. Specifically, I was at a loss of sleep.
When you cried your pathetic baby cry for the umpteenth time that night, I laid in my bed, clutching the covers, and begged you, “please, please, please, please…” I pictured you, there in your crib, cranky and inconsolable, and attempted to will you to sleep. I was a desperate woman.
I imagined you there. I imagined you calm. I imagined I was rubbing your back. But, wait…that’s not me. My imagination had taken over. That’s my grandmother rubbing your back. You never got to meet her. Golly, did she love babies! She would have loved to rub your back. And who’s that on your other side? That’s Aunt Jayne! She passed away on Kitten’s first birthday. She’s just thrilled to finally meet you. And where’s…there he is! That’s Grandpa in the rocking chair. Doesn’t he know he can’t smoke that pipe in there? Is he…? Yes, he’s laughing at me. That scamp!
And suddenly, I was crying. I was bawling my eyes out under the covers for all of these wonderful people who never got to meet you. And then I lifted my head and listened. Silence. You had stopped crying. You didn’t cry the rest of the night.
I almost went in to see if they really were in there with you. Only, I wouldn’t have wanted to break up the party.