Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Another Work Trip & Grace Hall

Well, Braydon/"Papi" has left again for another "work trip" to "talk to the man" and "have many, many meetings." This time he's gone from this afternoon all the way until Friday. This is only 3 nights, but it feels daunting. The idea of holding down the fort (the twin-three-year-olds+all-household-everything+my-job-during-the-2nd-week-of-the-semester+boys'-school-drop-off-and-pick-up+being-pregnant 'fort') for that long feels like a lot. I know, I know, many people have it a lot worse than me. My dad used to travel a lot when my sister and I were little, leaving my mom alone with us in rural snowy New Hampshire for days at a time. I don't know how she did it. And now I think about families like my friends the Double Lucky family, who have young twins and two careers, one of which requires extensive international travel. Honestly, I cannot imagine how Cindy and Ed stay sane with the travel situation. I highly respect them for it. Not to mention single-parent-families. Seriously. Now they are truly the unsung heroes out there, really. I feel ridiculous complaining when I think of stuff like that. Nonetheless, here I am. It is just not easy to hold down the J-M fort alone.

Anyhoo... A little snippet from today (mainly for Braydon cuz I know you'll just love to hear this B...)

So, this afternoon Braydon picked up the boys from school so he could spend some time with them before he left for his trip. At 3:30 he dropped them off with me at my office on campus on his way to the airport. The boys love coming to my office. And I love having them come. I have a big jar filled with lollipops in my office. Originally (long before K & O were on the scene) the lollipops were for students who were in my office for meetings with me. Students still love to get a lollipop from my office, but K & O are definitely the biggest fans now. They bound up the stairs of Price Hall and run to my office. They spring into my arms then go straight for the lollipop jar. Today was no exception. Have I mentioned ;) they are very routine-oriented kids. So this is their "Mommy's Office" routine: after they get their lollipops unwrapped and into their mouths they walk through the hallways of Price looking for faculty offices with open doors. Any open door they find they walk right in and chat with whichever professor is in there. My colleagues genuinely seem to love this little ritual (K & O don't come often enough to make it a nuisance). K & O shake the professors hands (even ones they know well), chit chat with them, explore their offices, and check out their computers/books/nik-naks. Then they move on to the next open-door-office. Their favorite person to visit is our department coordinator, Erica, who greets them with big hugs. They love her. Any students who happen to be around Price are just a bonus. K & O will high-five with them, jump into their arms, act crazy with them, and generally just brighten the mood of the entire Lehigh University Sociology and Anthropology Department. They run around making everyone laugh for a little while, and it is a breath of fresh air (two breaths of fresh air), to say the least. The next part of our ritual is to go next door to Grace Hall. I blogged about Grace Hall another time in this post. The boys need to go there every time they visit my office on campus. On the first floor of Grace Hall there are beautiful hardwood-floor basketball courts. Today was awesome for K & O because we just so happened to walk into Grace Hall in the midst of... none other than... men's intramural basketball!!! There were about 30-40 students in there. Some were playing pick up b-ball, some were just shooting hoops, and some seemed to just sort of be there hanging out. K & O watched, wide eyed, for about 5 minutes. Then slowly they started inching their way into the midst of things. From what I could tell the guys were all cool with it, so I let it happen. Slowly but surely, K & O got themselves out onto the courts and into the action. Soon enough they each had a basketball and were running around with the "big, big guys!!!" K & O were dribbling the ball and trying to shoot it. The "big, big guys" were very impressed and very taken with the 'two little guys.' Next thing I know K & O are being held up high, all the way to the hoop rims, to throw the balls in. The "big, big guys" were gathering around them, and for small spurts of time they'd all be actually playing together. It was quite a sight: all these cool, tall, male college students running around with two tiny guys in the midst of it. I sat on the first row of the bleachers and just watched with a huge smile on my face the entire time. From time to time K & O would look over to me and smile so wide that I swear it was ear-to-ear. At one point, when Owen had been held up high and actually got the ball into the hoop, he shouted over to me, "Mommy, you need to say 'Yay Owen!'!!!" It was all very, very cute. We stayed for over 30 minutes. Then I felt that it was probably time to let the "big, big guys" play by themselves. The only way I got K & O out of there was by bribing them with elevator rides. Grace Hall has an elevator, and I let them ride up and down in it, pushing all the buttons themselves, several times before we left to head home. Driving home I was thinking about how Braydon would have gotten such a kick out of seeing the whole Grace Hall basketball scene unfold. And I was thinking about how in moments like those it really does seem like my precious boys have somehow come out of the darkness of their beginnings to lead such very charmed lives. At least for now. And my hope and my goal is to keep it that way for them for as long as humanly possible (preferably, forever).

5 comments:

Stella said...

Awwww! I was had a huge smile on my face reading about the boys playing basketball! It must have been one of their most specil days ever. Buts thats hard to say, it seems like these boys love every moment of life. Peace! -Stella

M and M said...

I first came to your blog via a CHS post about your great details about how you learned to loc the boys hair. I've become an avid reader ever since. Thank you so much for your thoughtful reflections and just plain 'ol fun comments about K and O. When I read today that you are in the Soc and Anthro building I yipped happily as I am also an anthro (although I teach high school anthro, of all things!). Blog on!

Gooch said...

too cute!

Braydon said...

H - thank you for that post, it really really made my night!!! I miss you and K & O already!!!

Malia'sMama said...

I can just picture it! Next time let them do it in the tutus, k? ;)