Yesterday Merit became a baby.
She slept like the newest fairy princess in her crisp, white bassinet under the delicious canopy of lush green, gentle shafts of sunlight dancing in for an occasional glimpse at the princess, offering sweet kisses on her cheeks then hiding bashfully behind the pearl-gray clouds. Cardinals swooped and weaved through the thick leaves and branches, the last of the purple lilacs seemed to float on the wind through the bedroom window, filling the room with the sweet scents of evening. Below, rabbits and robins alike hopped and skipped through the grass, and you could almost hear them whispering to each other, "Yes, just up there, through those windows on the second story, is her Majesty, the Royal Fairy Princess Merit."
The infancy is over now that she is plump and calm, ravenous and alert, predictable and perfectly exhausted when one would expect a baby to be. She is not the whisper of new life that she was just two days ago, the tiny breath of half-heaven, half-earth. Infancy is sacred and dear, but it is beyond my grasp to reach those perfect little beings, completely. Infants are elevated beyond the understanding of adults, they are too perfect and so we treat them delicately, cautiously, uncertain whether they accept us or not.
Babyhood is different. It's as if she has said her goodbye to the silvery realm of Before and has flung herself into my arms, fully, leaving behind the pearls and shimmer and comfort of a perfect sphere, accepting this one with its flaws and trees and birds.