My niece, Jill, is getting married in early December. We’re not going to the wedding and it’s killing me not to be there. It’s just not a good time for us to leave the country. Jerry is doing really well and it’s hard to believe he had a stroke two months ago. Still it’s just doesn’t seem wise to go to Costa Rica right now. So we’re passing on this wedding.
Jill is special because she was born eight days after Erin, the first two granddaughters after a bunch of little boys. The cousins grew up thousands of miles apart and stayed good friends through the years. And since Jill was the youngest in her family I could always call my sister, Anne, if I had questions about my first born.
Nervous mom that I was, I had read the baby books carefully (I doubt Anne EVER read them…she was never an insecure mom) )and checked off all of Erin’s milestones. She was way ahead of the curve on a ton of things and I was feeling pretty smug. That was until I checked the two year old list and it said “can jump”.
Erin, I said to my two year old. Let me see you jump.
Erin frowned. What’s that?
I showed her. She brightened, went up on her tip toes and down again.
No, honey. Your feet have to leave the ground.
She did some kind of galloping thing.
No, darling, I explained, your feet have to leave the ground at the same time.
There was no way she could do it.
So I called Anne.
Can Jill jump?
What do you mean? Anne says.
You know, I said, can she get both feet off the ground at the same time?
I don’t know, says Anne, (probably thinking I was crazy) Hey, Jill, Anne called, can you jump?
Jill hopped around the kitchen and down the hall like Tigger from Winnie the Pooh.
Uh oh, I thought, my kid is delayed.
I brought Erin in that week for her two year old checkup. Toward the end of the visit, David Sigelman, pediatrician, asks me if I have any concerns.
She can’t jump, I tell him.
What do you mean? he asks.
Erin explains before I can. See, Doctor David. I can’t get both feet up at the same time. One, then the other. Not both. David grinned. Just want you to know, more people get jobs because they can talk than because they can jump
Eventually Erin did learn how to jump, thanks heavens And Jill is a competent articulate, decisive businesswoman who can probably still jump better than Erin. But honestly, we shouldn’t worry too much about how they’re doing at their two year old checkup.
So Jill is getting married and we were in Houston for a bridal shower hosted by Erin and Jackie, my nephew Chris’s wife. I’m so glad I could go. Jerry stayed in Flower Mound with Declan and Brent and carved pumpkins and played basketball. Erin and I and the girls went to Houston. The night before Jill’s bridal shower, the girls played with their young cousins while the grown up cousins got together and talked and laughed and lucky me, I could be part of it. Carly had flown in from Los Angeles which made it even more special for me. At one point I just sat back looked around at these beautiful young adults who are my family (and yes, they can all jump and talk) and thought how fortunate I was to be part of this.
And now we’re back in Flower Mound. It’s Halloween and I imagine we’ll go trick or treating with the kids. Lana is going to be Artemis..she’s our mythology kid. Calli is a car hop girl from the fifties complete with roller skates and tiny little Declan is Big Papi…yes there are big Red Sox fans in Texas.
We’ll head home on November 1 and things will be relatively quiet until Thanksgiving except lots of snowbird friends are coming back. More,traffic, yes. Long lines in the grocery store and restaurants, yes. But, oh my, we have such good friends and are so happy to see them.