I am going away in a few days without Luciana, something I have never done before. This was a hard freaking decision because I’m just that mom that doesn’t like to leave. I’ve never spent one night away from her, and now I’m spending 5 on the other side of the world. (To be fair, Sky and I did go to an LA hotel once, but we left after bedtime and were home at 7am. She didn’t register we’d gone.) One of Sky’s best best friends is getting married in Mallorca; the trip has to be quick because of Sky’s work; and the events are all late at night on an island with high cliffs. So taking a 2-yr-old for 5 days and dealing with jet lag and said late events and high cliffs seemed really hard for everyone. I sobbed when I realized the thing to do was take the trip just the 2 of us, which I’m sure some years from now I will laugh about, but I did, I sobbed, and I’ve gotten weepy whenever we’ve talked about it since.
Which is not to say I’m not really really REALLY excited. Sky and I haven’t spent 24 hours together just us since Luciana was born, and something tells me it’s going to be another 3 years at least before we get this kind of time together again. And did I mention we’ll be on MALLORCA?
But how to prepare Luciana? Who hears everything, gets everything, but doesn’t have a sense of time the way that would make telling the story of Mama and Daddy leaving and coming back a lot easier. I didn’t know. Several months ago I talked to the woman I did our mommy&me class with, and she told me to make a book for Luciana that tells the story. I loved that idea. And so I give you….
I made it in about 2 hours (these aren’t all the pages) and I cried pretty much the whole time. The following morning I woke up at 5am and went into the bathroom and sobbed for another 45 minutes, to the point that Sky asked me if I wanted to cancel the trip. Most third graders draw better than me, but it turns out my stick figures and bubble vehicles work just fine for a 2-yr-old.
Sky actually had to go over to Europe early
I have to say, I am proud of this book. As we’ve been reading it, I can see her making sense of the story. She’s a little on edge in moments these days–Sky’s already gone and that is the beginning of the story—but she talks daily about how mommy and daddy are coming back veeeeeeeery soon. And how much fun she’s going to have with my mom who’s taking care of her. What’s hilarious and perfect to me, too, is that as I’ve read her the book the story has gotten easier for me. I couldn’t get through the first page without crying a few days ago, and now we breeze through it, adding details and anecdotes. I made it for her, but it turns out I’m getting as much from it.
Sometimes you do things because your heart tells you it’s right even if the feelings surrounding that rightness are sad and scared. I know this is right. I can’t wait to hang out with my husband and log some hours of sleep and see a part of the world I might not be back to for years and years. And read and write and go to crazy fun parties and have some time with the baby in my belly. Luciana, I know, is going to be great. I don’t think my heart would have given me the green light if that weren’t so. And I know I will too. I’ll see you on the other side with a full report.