Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Absence & Abundance: Dear Maddie (Part 2)
Dear Maddie, You are going to be here very soon. Like, very soon. Like your mom just freaked me out with the words "mucus plug" and told me that I should be expecting a call in the middle of the night within the next few days. Regardless of the fact that parties have already been thrown in your name...(they're called baby showers and they involve games...and diapers)...that I've known about you for almost nine months now, I've seen you move around inside your mommy's tummy, kicking through muscle and tissue...there have been countless conversations about you - all good things, respectively - and I have seen your room... But regardless of all of that...I can't seem to believe that you are going to be here. You've come to symbolize the ideas of both absence and abundance for me... You are the absence of everything we see on daytime television and 24 hour news channels. The absence of poverty, hatred, viciousness and sadness. You are the absence of what we come to fear and fear itself. You are the absence of faults and frustrations and worry. And...you are - as well - the symbol of abundance. You are an abundance of little, tiny, miniature working parts. Fingers and toes, legs, arms and elbows...ear lobes, lips and a little nose. You are the abundance of love. So many people love you so much, so inexplicably - so unconditionally - already. The idea of that alone is a gift. It's what I think defines humanity. And we forget that...us big people...until somebody like you comes along. We forget that we can love without prejudice, with absolute purity - a completeness that we otherwise tend to lack...we forget that until the moment we hear that somebody like you has arrived...and suddenly we're reminded of the sense of abundance that is the capacity to love - that resides deep inside us. Waiting to be showered on you. And it's so unbelievably magical that the only way we know how to show it is to embrace your frailty...wrap you up in clothes and blankets and anything soft. Fill your room with color and toys and turn our arms into makeshift cradles. In my 25 years - so far - I have seen and heard of many a baby born. Relatives and those that belong to friends... But for whatever reason, my dear girl, you are different. You are just special...and I see no reason for explanation. You are special now and you always will be. You are the new gal in our little inner circle, in the little house of two very dear friends, on a little block, down a little street in our little town. Our own little patch of the world. And no amount of presents - though we'll find you some cool ones, don't you worry - will convey your importance here. And I will be sleeping on the floor...with the phone by my head set as loud as I can set it...in a state of anxiety...waiting for your mom and dad's phone call...because no matter what...I really don't want to miss this.