He has only been here for two years, but already I am forgetting small things about what Benjamin has done, has said. It doesn’t seem fair; who will be able to tell him what his first word was? I’m not even entirely sure. I barely remember the phone number for his nanny, who left this time last year.
There’s a small picture of the two of us on my desk; he is about 7 weeks old, and is lifting his head to look at my face. I am holding him, laughing. There is only a hint of golden lint – no actual hair to speak of – a tiny nose, tiny red hands clutching his burpcloth. The biggest thing on him are his ears – like mug handles. I am supporting his neck and head with literally 2 fingers.
I use those fingers differently now; they snap at his collar when he makes a run for it in open commercial spaces, they hold his tiny hand as we cross parking lots and walk down sidewalks (as well as down the hall from bedroom to breakfast).
He’s at the age, I’ve read, where a child wants to explore but always be able to check in, to literally touch homebase, to get a kiss and stand still for nosewiping or diaper inspection. I know how far away I wanted to be from my mother when I was young, and she wasn’t nearly the piece of work that I am. Everytime those little fingers come my way, I put my hands out, and invite his happy landing, with an “I gotcha!”, even if I won’t be able to hold on as long as I would like.