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You are 16 months. And because your mother is slightly numerology-obsessed, I see that 1 and 6 of 16 manifest to the number 7. And what a number 7 is. First, I am the 7th child so I‘m partial to it. Just think of all it’s involved in: 7-Up, a tasty drink that satisfies the bubbly without the caffeine. 7- 11, the place back East where you can buy 7-Up. The month you were born into. The 7 Deadly sins. There are 7 Wonders of the Ancient World although at this point I can only think of 5 (Pyramid of Giza, Hanging Gardens of Babylon, The Temple of Diana, The Hanging Gardens of Babylon). There is the 7th Heaven which is a state of Bliss and Joy and in the Kabbalist and Muslimworlds it is thought to be this radical dwelling spot. It’s the farthest of the concentric spheres and stars and is home to the god-beings and the angels. There are 7 days to a week. 7 ancient planets. The 7 year itch. The 7 Sages or Magical Teachers. The 7 Seas. And if you ever read the Bible, which I highly suggest that you do because an interesting read it is, you will find that 7 is the first number you come across and you come across it a lot. So, seven. To think, for a moment I wanted to name you Seven. Glad we called you Sula. During this mystical 7 time, which will occur in your life again and again, feel the magic my love. Feel your magic. Then See it. Then be it.
Let’s just put it this way. Last week when we were all getting over the stomach flu the only cure was Pho. Pho is a Vietnamese broth-like soup full of herbs and veggies. So while I was standing waiting for our family supply of Pho, listening to the owners talk to each other in their native tongue, I thought, “Sula is speaking Vietnamese. Exactly. Wow.” You are on the cusp of telling us the secrets embedded in your soul. You speak with your hands and the wrinkles in your forehead dance while you tell us all stories, mostly having to do with your sister Mia who is your muse. Mia and you play the Can You Say game. As our days weaves in and out of time and light, I hear over and over again, “Sula, can you say bowl? Sula can you say toilet? Sula can you say PooPoo and PeePee? Sula, can you say Dora? Sula can you say fairy? Sula can you say park? Sula can you say princess? Sula can you say Play-dough? Sula, can you say stroller?” And little miss, most of the time you can say it all. You voice is deep and high pitched all at once. I think I mentioned this before, I have never heard a child who can easily roar like a lion and sing like an angel all in the same vibration.
You can dance! Damn girl, skinny legs and narrow hips, and you can still dance. You have this one move where you lift one leg up in the air and bend the knee and the sort of bounce up and down on the standing leg, squatting forward slightly, and always falling down after a few beats and laughing the whole way. You have mastered Downward Dog, Anjali Mudra, Forward Fold and you are now attempting forward rolls and doing a pretty nice job at it. I do stop you from following your sisters lead and try to roll off the couch and on to the floor. I know you have no fear of anything physical, but some things give a mama a heart attack, ya know? You never really walked for long. You started to run almost immediately and now it is your preferred choice of travel. No longer do you like to be nestled into my chest, tightly bound by our wrap, flesh to flesh. Oh no. You must be running and skipping next to your sister, pulling everything off every shelf of every market in town. We are for sure banned from at least 4. And when I try to pick you up as you are throwing bags of pasta on the floor…oh do you get pissed. Back arching, nail scratching pissed. So pissed you scream and all those around just stare in disbelief. Like needle scratches, music stops, lights turn on, people stare kind of thing. Nothing of that decibel could come out of such a little pip-squeaker. Lioness, lately when I offer you something that you obviously do not want, like a water bottle, or a toy, you will take it from me, grab it right outta my hand. Then, still screaming, hold it for just a moment, looking right at me, let a second or 3 pass, and forcefully, powerfully throw it down on the ground. Or maybe even at me. It’s not like you just push it away. You make your point by taking it first and showing me exactly what I can do with it. Kinda funny. Kinda not. You are starting to get Mia back from months of bullying. You’ll just go right up to her and grab her book our of her hand. Pull her hair. Push her. I know it’s not nice and we need to be gentle, but I can’t help but secretly smirk. I mean, I had to watch her bite your toes once when you were less than a month old. Every dog get’s her day, I guess. Let Nature take Her course.
Naked. Outside. Eating sticks. Talking to the birds in the feeder. Peeing on the sidewalk. Everyday or it’s a bust. One of your most favorite things to do is swing at the park and go down the slide on Mia’s lap. You get a rush of joy, you look as if you are in your own 7th Heaven, right there at the park with your big sister’s arms around you as you speed down the slide.. It’s glorious to watch, the two of you close, like to beams connecting, holding up a house, a family. We’ve done well here with both of you. It is so warm and loved filled.
I don’t ever think anybody has ever looked as deep into me as you. You picked me because you have so much to tell me with your eyes. Your gaze can often take me from an impatient, prickly, pissy mood into one where I am in utter peace, mellow joy. How do you do it? It’s not so much wisdom, or age, or compassion. It’s humor. Your eyes scream at me with laughter. You remind me this really is one big, huge happy joke of a ride. Might as well laugh our asses off while we live it, right my love? You know that secret well.
You do have some sage-like glow, though. I hate saying this because you are my daughter and you are human and we are all sages if we want to be. But I can’t help watching a flicker of ancient flame dance from your crown chakra once in a while. It’s lovely yellow, orange, bleeding sunset hues. And then sometimes it’s just all white and fuzzy. Smokey. Your dear Auntie Brooke gave you a little T-Shirt with a silkscreen of Gandhi on it. Minus the glasses, there really is an uncanny resemblance. That’s pretty cool. You hang with Gandhi.
There are so many things to speak of when you come to mind. You eat like a real Italian. Tons of food and never a speck left on the plate. You like to sleep with a nipple in your mouth. You give the wettest, squishiest, smooshiest kisses on the planet. You hate wearing hats. You like the taste of white wine. You love babies, LOVE babies and take good care of your growing collection of dollies. You love books, but unlike your sister at this age, you don’t like me to read to you. You like to read all by yourself. Go girl. You like to hold food under your dog’s mouth and then scream NO NO NO NO NAANA when she tries to eat it. You love your belly to be kissed and you allow me and your dada to do it for hours. You love you father. It breaks me heart that you only get to hang with him in those sacred hours when he is not working. I know someday our schedules will be so flawlessly perfect that all of us can spend the kind of time together that us Earthicans are suppose to. You can hear his van pull into the driveway and you can’t wait to run to the door yelling his name and laughing with deep belly joy. When you wake in the middle of the night and my nipples are just too sore for one more suck, your dad sings you his own version of Hush Little Baby and you go to sleep by the time he is done ‘buying you a cord of wood’.
More than anything. Your just perfect. You twinkle and sparkle and shine like the stars in the sky. And when you and your sister make a Mama sandwich at night in bed, I am so following my road to Bliss. I am so unbelievable grateful for the abundance you have brought into all our lives. You are a blessing. I am so totally thankful you were born. Celebrate you, Sula, because your the shit.