Oh I am so delighted with her! Even though on Saturday we went to Walnut Creek for a party, stayed out too late, missed her bedtime, and since then she has not slept through the night as she had for the past few weeks.
Her skin has cleared with the help of the hydrocortisone. That explains much of the delight. I had been so anxious, witnessing her torment: the frantic clawing, the grimaces of frustration. Now she is willing to smile again, though I’ve yet to find the trick to her laugh.
There is also this: now I feel free to kiss her. Before I had been afraid of aggravating her skin. A semi-subconscious fear I chided myself for but that I never quite succeeded in overcoming. As K has said, there is always something, a “thing” about their infancy that dominates our attention, however unserious relative to other conditions. “Poop,” she said, “is ours.” We looked over at Beanie playing with his cars. I nodded. “Hernia.” “And sleep, too, wasn’t it?” “God yes, though I guess they were related.” The talk of mothers.
We’ll forget, you know. By the time we are our parents’ age, we’ll have forgotten almost everything, except maybe the identity of the “thing,” and one or two stories we repeat too often. Hence this record. Because the minutiae are what make it real, and lived. Two little scratches on her forehead, a few hours old now, no longer bright. Her lovely, thin, long eyelashes, curved perfectly at the tips. This accounts for the prettiness that brings such immense satisfaction to Panini’s mother. The soft force of her sweet breath, swirling in the drowsy space between us.
I think it is safe to ask Panini to switch with me now, but I fear disturbing the peace.