Yesterday morning I woke up very (very!) early to help out Audrey. Like 5:30 am early.
My husband had to whisper a couple of, “Come on, Honey!” to ease me out of my slumber, but once I was up… I was up. After all, I would be watching all 3 of Audrey’s boys for a couple of hours, so I needed to be fully awake.
Audrey’s husband Matthew had to be on the 6:45 am train to New York City. And Audrey had the first-appointment-of-the-morning 38-week check-up with her obstetrician. My husband was looking forward to driving Matthew to the train station, and then taking his very pregnant little girl out for breakfast before her appointment.
Audrey and her dad have many, many things in common… but a good breakfast is probably the most common denominator. I am not a breakfast person at all, so dealing with these two all my married and mommy life has been a challenge, to say the least. We joke in my family that Audrey and Dad are thinking about breakfast before dinner the night before is finished!
So this “date” was much anticipated by both of them. They had their favorite breakfast place all picked out days in advance. They knew what they would be ordering.
Now me? Give me a large black coffee and I’m good ’til lunch. So, of course, I had my husband drive to Dunkin’ Donuts on the way to Audrey’s home. And while there, I thought (much to Audrey’s dismay and disapproval… but hey, who was getting up at the crack of dawn for this babysitting gig!?), “A half dozen maple frosted donuts are just the treat Audrey’s boys will love me for.”
So we arrived with the donuts. I got the obligatory mommy eye-roll at the sight of the donut box. Instructions on all 3 boys. And off Audrey, Matthew and Dad went.
I took the lid off my coffee. Set up my laptop. Soaked in the early morning stillness. And waited for the sounds of my grandsons.
Audrey’s house is NEVER quiet, so I decided to do a little exploring. Up the stairs. Benjamin’s bedroom… ah, he was sound asleep in his crib, and I watched my little darling’s sweet breath move his blankets ever so slightly.
Then to Audrey and Matt’s bedroom, where Audrey had told me William would be… and there he was, snuggled in the center his mommy and daddy’s big bed.
On to Alexander’s room. I peeked in the door. I heard his precious little 2-year old voice, “Hi, Grandma.”
I whispered, “Hi, Honey-Bunny. How did you know it was Grandma?”
Ally stood up and said, “You walk different from Mommy and Daddy.”
I hugged him tightly and asked, “Do you want to come downstairs with me?”
“Yes,” he said. Then he squinted his eyes and asked, “Did you bring donuts?”
“Am I the biggest sucker in the whole world?” I answered.
He nodded. He knows.
So downstairs the two of us went, holding hands and whispering about the other boys sleeping.
He settled in at the kitchen table. I took out a plate. I ceremoniously placed the biggest donut on it. Ally was loving the attention. I delivered the donut… as if it were a feast for a king.
And we sat. And chatted. We chatted about the zoo. About his favorite animal book. About Star Wars, his newest interest.
Then he wrinkled his nose and announced, “Grandma. I ate William yesterday.”
Ally continued. “I ate William. Mommy and Daddy were mad.”
(Then the early morning haze parted and I remembered Audrey calling me the night before. We had talked about business. Had made plans for the morning. And she told me that Alexander had bitten William on the arm. He had never done this before, and we talked about biting.)
I looked at Ally’s innocent little face. I asked him, “Do you mean that you BIT William?”
He looked back at me. “No, Grandma. I ATE William. With my teeth.”
Well. It’s semantics. Ate. Bit.
And I know I shouldn’t have smiled. But I couldn’t help it.
Ally smiled too. And we came to an agreement about how we should never “eat” our brothers. Or anyone else, for that matter.
Then he finished eating his maple frosted donut.
And I could have “eaten” him, with all his sweetness, right up!
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