The Zoey Blog: Wide Awake and Dreaming... FINAL - COVER UNIVERSE EXPLORERS ORDER

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Wide Awake and Dreaming...

I heard the door creak and peek open, and I knew that Maggie's big sister wasn't sleeping.  An inch or perhaps two was as far as the door opened, and then I thought that I heard stumbling feet, and a jump into bed.  Zoey was definitely not sleeping.  By the time I gently pushed the door open and stepped inside, she had pulled the covers back up over her shoulders and looked very much the part of a sleeping child...except for the purple balloon drifting high above her bed near the ceiling.  It's silver ribbon sneaking down from the ceiling, beneath the covers, tethering the latex satellite to the bed, and surely her dreams as well.  When I roused her from her ruse, she said that she just needed to get her balloon, and open the door to see us better.  I swooned.  Of course that's why.

The sheer complexity of the emotions that parenting offers you is near paralyzing.  Everything feels stronger...every feeling floods you, unsolicited.  It's staggering.  Today a seventeen year old lacrosse player undid me.  I'm that sensitive...that easily toppled these days.  Emotionally, I've never felt on more shaky ground.  These girls, all three of them, can dismantle me.

There are nights that visiting Zoey's room an hour after bedtime would leave me frustrated.  Then tonight, I'm just happy to spend another twenty or thirty minutes with her.  She asked me about June's wedding dress, and what games I played when I was a boy, and what Gramma's parent's names were.  She's three and half years old.  It's incredible.  I was a reflection of sturdy emotion, until she asked me what tears were for, and why they happened when we were happy?  Undone.  I swelled with love and in the darkness of that room, balloon drifting above my head, I wondered what I ever did in any life to deserve this one.


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