Today is our Margot Rose's birthday. She would have been 9 years old. I found this thing I had started writing for her first birthday that made me feel all the ways I felt about her when she was first born. Such a fierce love and need to protect her. It's been 9 years, but it still feels like yesterday that she was here with us. She was so sweet. She loved music the most. I remember her dancing to any beat. Even the dishwasher. She was born in July and she passed in August of the next year, so we walk through these months feeling wounded, simultaneously mourning our loss and celebrating our life with Penn and Lucy and Milo.
The little video at the end, taken with some crappy cell phone, is of us at the library. Penn was making her laugh with this giant teddy bear. She was so loud the librarian had to come tell us to stop. We spent the rest of her life doing everything we could to keep her laughing like that. I love her every day and forever.
I spend my days holding her close with ideas that maybe I could put her back in. Keep her safe. Maybe if I rock her long enough I can encourage some sort of osmosis. Absorb her. And of course, I am. Just not literally. I imagine a bubble around her. Dreams and love and ideas are spun like sugar around us.
I spend my days kissing each roll beneath her chin, the back of her neck, the top of her head where the swirls of black hair spin around and around and into a peak at the top. I run my lips across the corner of her mouth, across the hill of her cheek and down to the bottom of her earlobe. I blow into her soft wrinkled belly button and the backs of her thighs. Her hands and feet find their way into my mouth like magic. She is the softest thing that has ever existed.
She burrows into my breast to nurse and heaves a sigh of contentment when we're all settled into one another. Her eyes close and her lashes are made from the feathers of baby birds. I am swollen with longing. I pray to Father Time to keep us this way forever. Or at least a little while longer.
When she cries in the arms of someone else I am pulled like a magnet. I am biologically wired to retrieve and protect but I wait. Smile. Gently take her when she's handed over and I coo and assure that it's okay out there in the world. That I'll always be here to come back to. Always. Always.
When she cries in her Daddy's cradle I wait longer. I whisper to her that her Daddy has never loved anyone more in the whole wide world and there are no arms better or safer for her to cry in.
Her Daddy stands tall and roars at the world with brawn and willpower promising excruciating elements to any who might harm her. Just as easily he turns and nuzzles her with such gentleness, golden whiskers and bright blue eyes. "Hi, Beautiful."
I spend my days holding her close and teaching her independence. Hoping I come upon some magical formula that can balance the two through the tornadoes of growing up. Hoping that someday she will be a woman, my daughter, and my friend, and we can sit back in our dreams, and love, and ideas, spun like sugar around us.
Beautiful little girl. We have enjoyed seeing your family grow. Thoughts and love to all of you.
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