It had been a rough day and Chinese was on our menu for dinner. After that BB and I had to drive the half hour to my parents’ house, then to the airport to pick up RB; he had been gone since Wednesday at conference in Albany and I felt guilty because, as excited as I knew he was going to be about it, I didn’t really care. RB had a retirement party to attend back in our neighborhood immediately following his pickup. Although he had said he wouldn’t go I insisted; it was an important networking opportunity. I was supposed to go glamping (glamorous camping, I was told) with some girlfriends, but my mother was unable to watch BB over night due to my father’s ailing health. I would miss one night but was planning on attending the next day. I did my best to not make her feel guilty about it.
We were rounding a traffic circle, finishing up a conversation about my father; I had told BB that his Papa was very sick (he was at the hospital for the third time in four weeks) and there was a chance he’d be going to see GG [my maternal Grandmother who passed away last year] soon. “Why Mommy?”
I told him that everyone goes to see GG at some point, but it’s okay because they can fly. I’m not a religious person and am still working out the kinks as far as talks about death. Even though he’s (almost) only three, I wanted to give him the heads up.
“Where’s my buddy Papa going?”
“Hopefully nowhere for a while.” I had been crying all day at work; my eyes were swollen and my head hurt. My mother was getting Hospice involved.
“Oh.” I glanced back at him; he was staring out his window, half paying attention, half already engaged in our next conversation. “Momy, look at that!” His still kind of chubby index finger pointed at the cemetery we were driving past.
“That’s like where GG lives. Can you say cemetery?”
“Good. Do you remember visiting GG?”
“GG is up on the mountain!” (She’s buried on top of a hill; I took BB to visit her for her birthday a couple weeks ago.)
“That’s right, baby.”
We kept driving, the flowers and headstones disappearing in my side mirror. “Mommy, that’s super awesome!”
I actually laughed out loud. He’d been saying that, super cool, and never ever for the past couple weeks; I’m still not sure who he got it from. Tom Petty played gently on the radio in the background.
“You know what, baby? You’re super awesome.”
“Mommy you’re super awesome!” As I turned onto the main street to get to the restaurant I beamed. Did he know what he was saying? Probably not. But it made me feel awesome for the first time that day.
“Aww, thanks baby. That was really kind of you to say.”
“You’re welcome.” I watched his sweet face in the rearview mirror as he continued to stare out his window and just take it all in.
The world is huge and there are so many wonderful things to see. I hope he never stops looking for them.