September 30, 2006


Dear Kaia,

Today you are twelve weeks old, and we just spent the best day together. It was a Saturday; I just got over a cold, I am fasting, and my mind is bouncing back and forth between a palatable euphoria and a nagging melancholy. I am now old enough to know that we need not be hostages of the sadness we carry. Sometimes, the very weight of this gloom can keep us tied down solidly where we need to be. And so as I sang to you and watched your smiles, as images of a past I no longer recognize, drifted in and out of our gaze, I couldn’t seem to pin down an emotion. My skin intermittently prickled with goosbumps, a tear, not sure of joy or sadness, would well up in my eye, then a comfortable and never ending smile streaked my face as we twirled in and out of the lights and shadows in the room.

You have learned to smile and are now mimicking some sounds that we make. Just today you started making the M sound. I played you some guitar and we both “ooed” to a progression of F C G chords. I am not sure where these feelings came from. I was overpowered by love today. I have not been his overwhelmed by emotion in some time. We floated between the past and the future, when suddenly we landed in the present. There we were, two people of one flesh, singing, smiling, kissing, and dancing in a sunlight room on an endless afternoon. My heart had no choice but to run through its repertoire of actions, trying to match the feeling to something in the past. The inability to make a match left me disillusioned.

I guess all I am saying is that even while you smiled at me with your soul melting eyes, I felt a tinge of sorrow linger in the room. But the fact that I love so deeply made me realize that I will never run from it again. The sadness of the world is ours to nurture and carry and tend as necessary. It took me years to learn this very simple lesson. I hope by the time you read this you have started to see that we need not be afraid of things that make us cry. They can be just as perfect as the things we yearn for.

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