A few very important, time honored rituals are occurring for Anastasias. Remember the scene in the Lion King where sweet, fuzzy baby Simba was held aloft by the creepy monkey with the stick? The music swells, your heart sores, and finally one single tear rolls down your cheek. Replace baby Simba with my periwinkle colored bagallini and you can recreate one of our rituals.
And I guess that makes me the creepy monkey . Now I am kind of regretting this analogy. Oh well.
I pack it carefully. Extra kid outfits in Ziplocs, sunscreen, little antibacterial dangling from my zipper. I sling it on, stuff my cell phone in its happy little home after I change the ring tone from “Sexyback” to “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes” . Those are two really different ring tones. I lock eyes with my man. Mickey head pupils look back at me. He is completing his ritual. In a loincloth with hidden mickies on it. There is guttural singing, and dancing. His body is painted with Disney characters. Don’t worry, he turns his nipples into Chip n’ Dale as God intended. After his camera backpack has been precisely loaded to his exacting standards. He heaves it on his back. We complement each other. Freaky and Weirdo. Our poor kids. He changes his ring tone from silent vibrate to Mickey saying “Hey Pal, it’s One of Your Friends”
We are ready. We hop into are van. For this trip we also pack Grandma . We have a one and half hour ride home to my castle. Mr. A drives and Grandma rides shotgun. The kids are in the middle watching classic Disney cartoons. Mrs. A is by her lonesome in the back, thinking. The Anastasias try and prevent Mrs. A from thinking. Especially around paint cans and hair dye. She is thinking. Past Disney memories. Ahhh.
What a sweet time. We had put off our honeymoon until the end of the school year. Almost a full year after our wedding day, we went to Disney World. On our way to Florida I did not feel well. In the morning I was sick to my stomach. I could not believe I was feeling sick on our honeymoon. We first stopped at my parents. My mother and I got to talking and I thought maybe I should take a test. I did not even tell Mr. A what I was up to. He figured me and Mom were thinking together and we would buy hair dye and paint, as usual. I took my CVS bag into the bathroom. It wasn’t hair dye. It was the test that would change our lives. I stood there looking at the positive result. The joy started at my toes and worked its way right into my heart. It has stayed there ever since. Tears, excitement, more tears. I kept hugging my stomach. A baby. A deep breath. Well guess who is going to get a big surprise? Mr. A was happy the last time I saw him when I passed him on the couch. He was watching sports and laughing with my father.
Now mom , on the other hand, knows what I am up to. She knows one of two things are going to happen- I'll either come out of the bathroom shaking my head or I'll call Mr. A in.
I couldn’t see her when I called his name but her happiness filled the air. I told him. We hugged and cried and laughed. A baby. We freak out. "How do we pay for a baby! How do you hold a baby? I've never held one, have you?"
Before it can even sink in for Mr. A I know I have to see my mom . She has wanted grandchildren more than she wanted children. It'll be the biggest gift I ever give her. My Father, how will he react? No time to wonder- we are at the door.
We have an announcement, “We are going to have a baby” (See how little I knew, I said “we” instead of “me”, he was there, but I had that 8 pound 6 ounce baby.)
My mother is crying and laughing. My father is shocked, but happy and hugging.
Later in the pool I say “I can not believe I am married and pregnant.”
My father’s response is “Thank God."
We are off the next day to Disney. A wonderful world I'll share with Mr. A. He has not been there since he was a boy. I did not know I was poking awake a beast that could never be satisfied. My favorite memory of this trip is walking into the “Making of Me” that was in Epcot. Martin Short was describing how humans are made. The Kings held hands tightly with eyes as wide as saucers.
“Mom can you open this for me?” My son, he grows every five minutes now. He looks so much like me, but he's much nicer. I ruffle his hair. His head is so huge. (It always has been)
We're almost there. Getting closer. I start getting antsy. I can’t hear the adults over the air conditioning and the cartoons. I'm thinking again.
Years after the “Making of me”, We made another “me." A sweet, plumpy baby girl with the hugest jewel like green eyes surrounded by thick, long lashes that are usually wasted on boys. She's six months old and Disney is her new playground. As long as her brother is around, she's happy. At her first character meeting, she encounters the nipple chipmunks. After seeing her brother embrace them she's on board. She feels Chip’s nose. Dale gets low so he can hold her. She loves him. I go to take her back. Dale won’t give her up. I insist. I think if I would have left her to be raised by the Chipmunks she would have loved it.
Little six month old GC is breast feeding. BC breastfed until he was 27 months (I know-ouch ). GC loves it as well. Being a real modest breastfeeder, it was really hard for me to find places to be alone to feed her. We would make it to the baby station as often as possible. Sometimes we were too far. During our lunch at Japan, PS was hungry. I could find no where to feed her in private. I grab Mr. A, give BC to the grandparents and commence looking for “the spot." I don’t like people looking at me. BC and GC were always very active feeders so it was hard to stay covered. GC is getting fussy. I am starting to freak out. We head deeper into China (or where ever the frick we are). I see a secluded spot. Behind the huge horse statue with some dude riding it. I head for it. Mr. A is trying to stop me, he,s alarmed. You see there is a rope I have to climb over to get to “the spot." I snap around and tell him to be on lookout. I hunker down behind the angry warrior and feed the screaming chubster. Ahhh. She falls asleep in my arms. My unwilling lookout helps me back over the rope. Annoyed. I crossed a rope. In Disney. What If there were cameras? What if we get kicked out? We were fine.
I still think there should be about 15 baby spots in every park. Looking back on it now I wish I could tell young, modest Mrs. A to just relax and not care. The Jiggler was in her future. Sometimes older, floppier Mrs. A lets the girls hang out of her bathing suit when getting in a pool just to distract people from The Jiggler . Oh Well.
Is that a sign I see? It is a sign! It is Mickey’s sign. I can stop thinking (thank you!)
We are on property. My property.