Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Just Watching

Last night JP and I were laying down on Landon's little twin bed, watching the kids play in their room.  We'd been quiet for a little while, me curled up in his arms, my head resting a little below his on the pillow.  I was lost in thought, wondering curiously and aimlessly about our next step- would JP find another job?  would it be in this city? this state?  how long would we live here? would we ever live somewhere we both believed we'd stay? what did I want to do next?  why, despite loving this job, was I so certain there was a next one?  JP was quiet too, presumably thinking about something, though I've learned through long interrogations that it is fully possible for him to lay awake and think of nothing.

The kids seemed to have forgotten we were there and we enjoyed an unfiltered glimpse at the two of them being completely themselves, completely with each other.  They have their own language, 90% what they speak to everyone else, but interspersed with words we don't understand and never hear directed at us.  Landon was weaving a complicated story about why his Batman was going to jump off the changing table and fight Batgirl (I'm not sure we explained they were on the same team) and Claire, draped in every necklace that could be found in the dress-up drawer, was nodding vigorously, trains and matchbox cars in hand, ready to provide transportation to the scene.  Landon stole (borrowed?) one of her trains for the Batman and she squealed repeatedly, trying to grab it back from his hand.  I looked at JP, waiting for him to interject, when I saw he was smiling.  He generally has a far lower tolerance for disobedience and rule breaking than I do, so I whispered, "aren't you going to say something?" and he just said, "no, wait, I've never seen this before."  We stayed silent, Landon gave Claire the train back, and they moved on to a new elaborate factual scenario involving all the train tracks, trains, superheroes, animals in Noah's Ark, and an old cell phone.  And so we lay still, together, watching them play, and I thought about how it can make you ache inside to love so much.

Later, I asked JP what he had meant on Landon's bed.  "Siblings," he said, "the two of them together- I've never seen it before and sometimes I just like to watch."

I often forget that although our last 11 years are shared, our childhoods were very different.  He was an only child of only children in a big house on a bigger piece of property with no siblings, cousins, or neighbors to speak of.  His parents were older, stricter, and remote, both from him and each other.  He's so loving and affectionate that sometimes I forget that nearly all of this- from the snuggling in front of our children, to watching them play together is nothing he has any experience with.

And he's right, it is nice to watch.

1 comment:

  1. Awww.
    You know, being able to think of nothing is a gift. I have been practicing that, but it takes a lot of effort and I can't keep it up for long yet. Clearly JP is more enlightened than me or you.