I went to town today and I stopped by the lab where I had my hormone levels checked because I'd gotten a bill from them and had already paid I thought, and so I figured since I was going to be in town, I'd just run by and get it all straightened out.
While I was waiting to see someone about it though, I actually looked at the bill and realized that yes, I probably did owe them the money and was cheerfully ready to pay it but the lady told me that I had to pay either online or by mail. She could not take my money.
Modern life is so absurd but I know there are good reasons and so I went on my way to go downtown to take an instrument called a mandola to a string-repair place for Lis. The first thing that went wrong there was that the street in front of the shop was being torn up and so I circled about four times, trying to figure out between one-way streets this way and one-way streets that way where best to park to get to the place on foot and I finally did but when I got there, it was closed. There was a sign on the door saying that they were open seven days a week but only by appointment.
I hefted up the mandola (which is far bigger than a mandolin) and walked back to my car and came home after calling the posted number, getting an answering machine and leaving a message.
I was able to successfully pay the eight dollars I owed to the library for washing one of their audio-book CD's and breaking it (my washing machine has a powerful spin cycle) so that, at least, was a mission carried out.
On my way home, Lily called and asked if she could bring the boys out. There were two men tearing up part of her house in order to install something having to do with TV and Wifi and she needed to get out of there. I was delighted at the idea of having a visit from my daughter and grandsons and so, soon after I got home, they got here, the dogs barking in joy that their Owen was back again.
Gibson was asleep when they got here in his little car-seat cradle and Owen immediately went to the library to play a game of chess (yes, he's a genius) and Lily asked so very tentatively if she could lie down and sleep for a half an hour. Would that be okay?
Oh. Of course. There is nothing as satisfying as knowing that you can allow a young mother to take a blessed-nap in your house. I don't know why, but there just isn't. Well, it's probably because we all remember what it's like to crave a nap with every molecule of our bodies but not to be able to because of children who are awake and who need us.
And so she went and laid down and I kept an eye on both boys and then Gibson woke up and although he seemed a bit confused as to why he was in a different place with his grandmother smiling above him, he didn't fuss and then Judy and Carolyn came over and we chatted and Gibson cooed at us and Owen asked Judy to fix a bell for him which had lost its dinger and she did and then they left and Lily woke up and then we all got to hang out together.
It was rainy outside and cozy in and I followed Owen around and he knows every nook and cranny of this house and he has all of the things in every room that he likes to play with and so he did all of those things.
Here he is, playing with a puzzle in the Panther Room.
Besides playing with Owen I got to cuddle and play with Gibson who is becoming quite verbal and who is still chewing whatever comes to his hand to take to his mouth (his favorite- our fingers) and who is, quite frankly, just the smiliest little monkey of a bundle of a baby you've ever met. AND I got to hang out with Lily, the baby usually between us, us adoring him and laughing at Owen who got into my make-up (yes, he's allowed) and who painted the entire area around his eyes electric blue and I couldn't get a good picture because he wouldn't let me, but trust me- he was rockin' the dramatic eyes.
He pretended to be a monster and roared at us and stomped his feet and when I called him a monster he said, "I no monster. I Owen."
And then he roared and stomped again and he even bit me but I knew that he was doing it like the monsters in Where The Wild Things Are- he'd eat me up he loves me so- and there wasn't one bit of malice or meanness in it, and I have often wanted to take a bite out of him AND his brother and it is only with great adult restraint that I have stopped myself. I did of course tell him that biting wasn't allowed and so did his mother but if you can't bite your grandmother, who in hell can you bite?
Don't tell him I said that.
And then they left. Lily set Gibson in his seat and before she could buckle him all in, this is what he looked like.
It always takes awhile for them to leave. Shoes must be found and toys must be rounded up which are going home and snacks for the long 15-minute ride home must be picked out and procured, car seats must be buckled and secured. So there is another small whirlwind of activity and then they leave and I am left behind in the quiet, the other side of the coin of the grandmother's joy.
The guy at the music store called me back and we made a time for me to drop off the mandola. I tidied up the house, I read an entire New Yorker article online about Bruce Springsteen which I missed because of the lapse in my subscription (and did I tell you? NO, I did not! that May has renewed my subscription for me- bless, bless, bless her).
A darling woman named Amna sent the link to me and although May has been saving the issue of the magazine with the article in it for me, I read the entire thing and it took me a good thirty-or-forty-five minutes because I read and cherished every word.
And so, it has been a very lovely and balanced day. There were circumstances where I could have gotten pissed or frustrated but I did not. I have felt tender and loving in my heart all day, and I know that tomorrow I am going to see Hank and May (we're coming to eat at Mockingbird, May, if all goes as planned!) and Lily and the boys, and I will get the mandola where it is supposed to go.
It's probably all because I have been taking a bit more of my hormones than I was and if that's the case and true, well, then fuck it and bless it- hormones are probably the reason for everything whether we are creating them in our own bodies or taking them artificially.
I'll take what I can get. Pop Eye had spinach. I have little nasty-tasting gummy things that I let dissolve between gum and cheek.
Whatever gets you through the night.
Reality is a transient and funny thing.
It was a good and balanced day with rain and with sunshine, with activity and with baby-on-the-bed-lounging, with open-heartedness and acceptance. Laundry and sweeping and friends were involved.
I'll take it.