Susan's Blog

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Sweet Something

A silvery wet rainfall this morning; white mist streaming in. It is warm enough that the grass seems to be greening up a bit. One of those wintry rains where the bark on the trees looks black against the powdery gray sky. I sip strong, sweet, creamy coffee and watch through white linen curtains, the stillness of a pre-Christmas Saturday.

I finish the last brown drop and pour another, a luxury. Usually I try to save two mugfulls for Ned, but I will just make him more when he emerges from the warm white cave of snoring blankets. I love Morning Ned. His hair stands up a little, which is adorable, he’s without glasses, (like the Ned I first met), his eyes are wide, navy blue, and innocent; he’s warm and he’s usually humming.

Ned and Max are the happiest people I know, I think. Happy in the content sense. Not much bugs them. They have an interior that is rounded and smooth and that allows most irritating things people do to simply slide off. Hence, their nicknames Neddy Sweets, and Little, Little Sweets (way back when, Max was a tiny baby. It lasted for like a day, and then he became big. I called him Little, Little Sweets and it got shortened to Little, Little. Nat was Sweet Guy, and Ned was Sweets. By the time Ben came along, he was called “Littlest Sweets,” but we quickly amended that because Sweet and Benji don’t really mix! Ned calls me “Susan Sweets,” by the way. At one point, when we were engaged, we considered taking a brand new last name: Sweets.)

Ben and I are rarely content. We swing high and low. Our happiness is sharp and bright; our crashes burn and hurt. Our anger is fiery and terrible, Old Testament style. It is our wiring, we can’t help it, but most likely certain meds would soothe, if we were plagued by it too much.

And Nat? I think he is a content soul. Anyone who would walk around murmuring about the things that interest him, rarely cry, and grin over candy seems to me to be a content type. His anger is rare (knock wood), fierce, but short-lived and often he just takes it out on himself (biting his arm, poor darling).

The silence upstairs was just interrupted by a sharp burst of sound, hard feet on the floor, a deep-voice cough; Nat is awake and already active. He will get completely dressed, come downstairs, and eventually take his place in the center of the livingroom couch. There is the gentle murmur of his “silly talk,” and a worried glance out the playroom window at the street lights and the Christmas lights. Good or bad? I still don’t know for sure what it is he wants to see out there. I’m sure he’s annoyed by the lack of sunlight, however.

Last night I heard him silly talking and one of the words I could make out, other than “dark,” was “Funny Bunny,” the name of his old stuffed animal. Hoping he wouldn’t mind, I said, “Nat, did you say, ‘Funny Bunny?'”

“No Funny Bunny,” he said, but he was grinning widely.
“Natty, I love you, ” I said, also smiling.

Nat had been excited to get a bag of candy from one of his teachers, Kristin, he told me. He sat down after dinner and scarfed the entire bag, while Ned watched enviously. Ned asked him for a bite, and Nat said, “No,” grinning.
“Natty, you don’t share?” Ned asked.
“No,” still grinning.
I said, “How about me?”
Nat looked up, worried. “No — ” he started to say, and then I made a sad face and he said, “Yes.”
Ned said, “Oh, you’d share with Mommy and not me?”
“Jewish Mother guilt,” I said, smiling smugly. “It works on all three of them!”
Or maybe Nat doesn’t mind saying he’ll share with me because he knows I won’t really eat the candy? Hmmm. It’s like offering my dad a taste of a Devil Dog or Twinkie; you know he won’t take a lot, (he calls it “tax,”) so you don’t mind. It counts as sharing, but it is hardly anything!


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