I was delighted to be asked to help raise money for the Leukemia-Lymphona Society. A great bunch of people, most especially Leslie Schilling. Who is the greatest of the great.
It has been two years now since we brought Lily home, and right from the beginning I hated every time she cried out in her sleep. At first, her night-time cries were simply physical distress. Later, when she hit that moment in her development when she had night tremors, I comforted myself with the fact, as doctors re-assured me, that she wasn’t really dreaming, but we now that she can talk, we can no longer pretend that she isn’t having nightmares.
Last week, the night after we returned from our grand trip to Houston, she woke up crying “truck blown away, truck blown away!” (We had seen a pretty terrible wreck on the interstate, one in which one of the vehicles, a six-wheeled panel truck, was on fire, sending up huge plumes of smoke in the misty rain of the day. We had, however, said nothing about what had happened, no mention of blowing up or away.)
Later in the week, she woke up screaming “my blanket, my blanket. It’s my blanket!” We both rushed to her and all of us ended up sleeping in her bed.
And this morning she woke up crying “go home! go home!”
You read that right, or, rather, er, okay, not really. But let me explain: tonight, as I sat with Lily on my lap, after she had finished her first bottle, we read one of her three Charlie and Lola books, aka “CharlieLola.” And then she got out another one — which she does by leaning *wayyy* out over the arm of the chair and dangling her arms into the basket of books which she calls “library” all the while saying “let’s see, let’s see.”
Wouldn’t you know it, but out comes another “CharlieLola” book. Her first one, the one about books and libraries. At first she just sits on my lap flipping through it, talking a bit about books and “CharlieLola.” And then she starts to read the book, or rather, she has heard the book so many times that she knows how it begins:
> I have this little sister. Her name is Lola.
She is small and very funny.
From there she went on to describe much of the plot of the book. By this point, Yung-Hsing had joined me in the bedroom and we both simply sat there with our jaws in our laps, listening to Lily read to us while she turned the pages.
Lily turned two last Wednesday, and, well, we never did get around to hosting a party — neither of us are party planners — but we did manage to host a birthday weekend in Houston for the Bean. While we did not set out to make shopping for her a major component of the trip, I have to admit that most of the bags in the back of the car were for her. I got a computer game — which I can’t play on my current computer, and Yung-Hsing got a few clothes. Lily got a table, a chair, a stool, a hanging set of shelves, some huge leaves to make a canopy for her bed, some books, and I don’t even know what else.
Today Lily went to the doctor for her two-year checkup. The results are in:
In sum, she is holding her course: staying just about dead average for height, light on weight, and a smallish head.
We probably need a new tag: something like “what lily tells us.”
We have reached a moment where it is often wiser to wait and let Lily tell us things, rather than leaping ahead of her — or at least that’s how we initially think about it. The result is almost always funny, and, in the case of the example above, sometimes metaphorically richer.