My family is in New Jersey. all of them. I'm still in MA. And I'm o.k. with that.
Actually I'm not. It sucks. But I'll deal.
The reality is that my wife lives about 300 miles from her entire family. She's got her mom, step dad and 5 siblings who all grew up and bought homes within 20 minutes of each other in New Jersey. She and I moved back to my home town of Dudley, MA back in 2001. We try to get her down to The Garden State as often as possible. Most of my vacation time from work is spent on long weekend or holiday trips down to Jersey. Not the typical vacation destination, but Chrissy has a wonderful family and it's great to connect with everybody.
This time, we were able to score a good deal on Southwest Airlines and Chrissy and the kids were able to fly down there for the week. I've got to tell you, though...there's nothing more nerve wracking than having your entire family on one airplane....loading and reloading the Southwest.com "Flight Status" page until you see "Arrived" appear. Anyhow....
I'll be joining them in a couple days to spend Labor Day weekend down there (also my Mom-in law's birthday).
Right before the family left, Ivy was like **this close** to walking. I had seen her take a step or two at home, but nothing major. I told Chrissy "When you guys get to Jersey, she's gonna just take off" and guess what....
I totally called it. Apparently, she's all over the place. I was able to see a few minutes of video footage that Chrissy shot that my Father -in law, Charles, edited and posted on his facebook page (thanks for that, pop-pop, by the way). It's so bittersweet.
It's so strange, sometimes, being an attached parent. We sacrifice so much and spend so much time and invest so much mental, physical and spiritual energy on our kids. Then it's in the one 72 hour period that I'm apart from her that she decides to start walking. I was sad...but only for a few seconds. I've seen some of these Youtube video montages, of troops arriving home from war to be greeted by their family,. Kids that they left as babies who are toddlers now. Some left behind pregnant bellies to now be greeted by 3 year olds. I can't really complain.
I'm heading down there after work on Thursday. If traffic is favorable, I might make it down before Ivy's bed time (Gavin will be long in dream-land, though), and honestly, I don't even care if she walks to me or not. To just be able to hold her, nuzzle into her chubby cheeks and neck...to smell her little baby girl milky baby neck....to hold her so tight while she tries to squirm away...to kiss my sleeping son on the head and make sure he's tucked in just right...no one but a parent would get it...but that's gold, right there. The walking....that's just cream cheese.
I'll see you soon, guys.