it is an ever holy breath in a first year on earth: baby's first christmas. i don't think i will ever get over how a christmas tree all lit up in the morning feels, especially with my wild-haired husband handing me french press and our baby palms-up for me, his tiny, chirp-of-a-voice calling for me. "mama."
mama. mama. mama. all day long. nights, too. my name rides on his every exhalation. like music notes ride on breezes. like my own grateful prayers ride my heartbeats.
lately, the air smells of pine and all the city wears magic like a favorite sweater. i sit with francis beneath the twinkling tree, reading the little prince aloud while he explores, and he feels joy with his whole body. i have been gathering treasures and spinning ukrainian bell carols and bing crosby's christmas album on repeat. walks to our post box in the vestibule of our apartment building are a grand adventure, wonder and thrill at what merry note, and from whom, has come for us today. the stockings are hung and fir branches are frosted in baubles, each telling tale of a life unfolding: the rose print cat from our honeymoon, the ballerina from my first tree in new york, a wishing bone, a hot air balloon, a hummingbird, a scene from paris, last year's for-baby swan a-swimming aside this year's boy flying atop a goose. everything, everything, is made magic by the glow of the tree, and i am mustering all of my might to make every minute last an hour these days of december.