Stepping Out

Two weeks ago I stepped out of my daily life and everything has changed.   Two weeks ago Sam and Marianna and I left New Hampshire, headed back to New York to be with Adrienne and Matt for the last weekend of the Sam and Marianna’s visit from Tennessee.  We were all hoping Adrienne would have her baby over the weekend, but if not, we’d have a fine time anyway.

And then came Emilio, perfect, scrunchable, adorable, sweet, robust, enormous and tiny Emilio.  The grandchild Eric never met, Adrienne and Matt’s first child.  Sam’s nephew.  My grandson, making me Mimi.  The rest of the world continued on its daily path, as it did, to my astonishment, after Eric died.  Life is birth and death, which we all know, but we don’t all get to live it as close up and real as I have over the past four and a half years, and this side of the birth/death equation has been astounding and profound.  Amazing that everyone isn’t stopping what they’re doing and marveling at this wondrous new being Emilio.

David has come and gone twice in these two weeks, and we talk every day, do our daily downloads the best we can long distance.  I’ve talked with most of my close friends, at least once, since Emilio’s been born, and am emailing many of them.  But mostly I’m keeping up with the larger sphere of my personal life via Facebook, which means simply posting photos of Emilio. 

I’m trying, somewhat in vain, to stay on top of my job by working remotely.  But being the Mimi is what I want to be doing, and doing work phone calls, staying up on email, frantically reading whatever needs to be read for the call I have coming up in the next hour, has been draining.  I’m all baby brain and that’s where I want to be.  Every email I return has photos of Emilio attached.

Saturday I’m leaving to go back to New Hampshire, to my home, to my job, to my life as I formerly knew it.  But it’s fundamentally altered now, and that’s only wonderful.  My arms will be aching to hold Emilio and I’ll probably want to video-chat with Emilio like a crack addict, but that’s what babies do to me, to many women I know.  We’re hard-wired to fall in love this way and I’m in love.

Ah, Emilio.

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About Grace Mattern

Grace Mattern is a poet, writer, mother, grandmother, partner, friend, family member, gardener, triathlete, hiker and for 30 years was the Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. She resigned her position at the Coalition on June 15, 2011 in order to concentrate on her writing, while continuing to engage in the movement to end violence against women as a consultant and advisor. Her chapbook Fever of Unknown Origin was published in 2001 and her full-length poetry book The Truth About Death was published in 2012.
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