One Small Thing

Life is made up of small things.

Mostly these are the little gestures and daily patterns which make up existence, but every once in a while there are those magic, infinitesimal changes that alter the course of everything. Or if not everything, at least Important Things.


One week ago I became an Aunt.

A fact I knew was coming for months and months. A fact which, on the face of it, has quite literally nothing to do with me. My shiny new title is entirely defined by the actions and existence of others.

And having dozens and dozens of aunts and uncles myself, I went into it with a pretty good if rather vague idea of what it would entail and how I wanted it to go.

But it is so true as to be cliché: babies change everything.


Now I am not one of those women who reached thirty never having been thrown-up on or is unfamiliar with the politics and processes of breast vs. bottle.

I grew up in an at-home daycare center. I was the go-to babysitter for 21 first cousins and two entire neighborhoods. I partly paid my way through college nannying, and I spent a good deal of my adult life so far making events, activities and fun stuff for kids of all ages.

I’ve known my share of small tykes (some since first embarking on QSS) and have loved every exhausting, annoying, infatuating minute of it.

But still I was unprepared.


Fact: there is baby-tiny, and then there is newborn-tiny. And my, oh my is it a different kettle of fish.

I held my nephew when he’d barely clocked 24-hours on this planet.

His eyes hadn’t found focus much less an iris color. His limbs were foreign assailants, leaving Wolverine-like claw marks down his sleeping face. His head was softer than an overripe peach.

He was perfect and healthy and just like a baby would be, but somehow not-quite-fully-human yet which took me completely by surprise.

This little mewling creature was a whole new level of vulnerable. So unaware. So freshly formed.

And so in need of care!

Despite being completely aware we are neither the most qualified nor the most capable to do so, both Bean and I were overcome with our desire to nurture him, and quite frankly, never give him back.

I would have sworn under a delusional oath that his little siren song sounded only for me. His little useless fists and sighs called out to me, like he needed me personally. Which is absolutely absurd.

He has doting parents and grandparents and all manner of family (You should have seen my brother’s chest swell with pride and an over-full heart when he’d hold his tiny offspring. Oh my goodness I’ve never seen him so happy.). They adore him and will be wonderful at this. I know this.

But something in his tiny newness made me feel needed and whole in a way that was magic. (Thanks for that by the way, little dude.)

Of course from here on out I have no idea what will happen (wouldn’t that spoil the fun!).

I may become one of those kooky twice-a-year aunts with bad hair and pockets full of cookies — I’m hoping for something a bit Mrs PiggleWiggle, I think, possibly with dash of Mame.

Maybe we’ll end up living next door and having a massive brood of our own (Warning:  Babies might be addictive. They should definitely put that on the label… ).

Or maybe I’m about to timeslip to a Mars Colony in the year 2143 and never him see again.

But whatever happens, me and this tiny-human have bonded. Full-on unquenchable, ineffable, mighty, miraculous bonds.

And that shit is for life whether he knows it or not.


PS – No wonder Pregnant Women Are Smug. What a total fucking miracle.




One Response to “One Small Thing”
  1. Anika says:

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!! How very exciting! I expect pictures and more info!


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