Chapter 28 2006 - You’re Beautiful

“I’m fat!” Chrissy complained.

“You’re beautiful,” Billy stated. ”You glow.”

“I’m still fat. Look at me.” She observed herself sideways in the mirror. “I stick out to forever.”

“Twins will do that to you.” The ultrasound had revealed twins, and now in her third trimester, there was no doubt she was really pregnant at this time. A boy and a girl.

“Damn these genes, anyway.” Chrissy complained. “I blame my mother.”

“And who does she blame? Her mother only had one, and there are no other twins going back at least three generations that we know of. Or on the other side, either. You’re just lucky, I guess.”

“Lucky? Luck wins you the lottery, or a jackpot in Vegas.”

“You can’t gamble, you’re only twenty. And you can’t drink either. You’re pregnant.”

“Do you have to constantly remind me? I wake up every morning and have to shift this big body around during the day. And the heat doesn’t help, either.”

“You’re still beautiful,” Billy assured her.

“Hah!” and Chrissy left it at that.

Angela and I couldn’t wait for he arrival of their first grandchildren. After the disappointment of the false pregnancy, the fact of a sudden pregnancy so soon afterwards was overwhelming. When they found out there would be both a boy and a girl, they were beside themselves. Angela rushed out to start buying baby clothes, and all the trappings that come with a newborn. There were cribs, car seats, high chairs, bibs, pacifiers, stuffed animals, easy reader books, the list went on and on, and everything in double quantities. Chrissy’s old room was converted into a temporary storage area, and the danger of even exceeding that space became very real.

“How much do two little babies need?” I inquired.

“Only the best for our grandchildren! When I was pregnant with Chrissy, and later with the twins, I didn’t get to enjoy any of this. I had to bear the children, but I didn’t get to have any of the fun. I’m sure Chrissy is just as miserable as I often was. But I wouldn’t have traded it for all the world.” She didn’t want to appear ungrateful.

“We have good kids, and Chrissy’s will be good too.”

I set to work on assembling a crib.

“Tell me again why we have four of these?”

“Two we will give to Chrissy and Billy. Two we’ll keep here at home for baby sleepovers.”

I was already beginning to regret his enthusiasm for grandchildren. “And how often will that be?”

“As often as we can. I wouldn’t mind if they lived here all the time!”

“We’ve been through that, years ago. You really relish the 3 AM feedings, chaining diapers, staying up with them while they’re sick, getting peed on, getting thrown up on?” I continued his litany as if it was crazy that anyone wanted children at all. “I thought you got tired of that with all the puppies. They’re just like little kids, too.”

“Puppies are cute. Puppies are adorable. Puppies can be given away. But grandchildren are beyond all that. Grandchildren touch your heart like no other can, even your own children.”

“My philosophy is spoil ‘em rotten, then send them back to mom and dad to deal with. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”

I returned to the assembly of the crib.

“You are so wrong about that. You’ll see after they’re born. They will melt your heart. There won’t be a single moment that you’ll want to be separated.”

I doubted that that would be the case, and returned once again to the assembly of the crib. When he finished, he gave it a good shake to check for soundness. One end fell off, and the whole structure collapsed. He looked around, and noticed some extras parts. “Maybe these have something to do with that,” as he pointed out the disaster.

He picked up the instructions, reviewed and determined that not only were the missing parts essential, that they needed to be used at the beginning of the assembly. Everything had to come apart.

“These instructions are no good!” he exclaimed. “That’s why I like to hire professionals. I’m no good at this.”

He started from scratch, and finally got to the end with a stable, and apparently safely constructed piece of fine furniture. “There we are. Done!” he stated with a sense of real accomplishment.

“Done with one, that is. There are three more,” Angela pointed out.

I looked dejectedly at the three unopened boxes. “Oh.”

He set to work on each in turn, and after three hours, had completed two of them. “At least they didn’t fall apart,” he said wearily, but also proudly.

Taking a break before tackling the final one, he heard the phone ring. Angela answered, and the tone of her excited conversation indicated that something was afoot. Hanging up, she cried up the stairs to I. “The babies are coming early. They’re on the way to the hospital.”

Angela and I jumped into the car and headed to the hospital themselves, eager to await the birth of the new twins, but anxious that there were still three weeks to go before the due date.

“It’s not unusual to be early for twins,” I assured her.

“Still, it’s not the best of circumstances,” she said worriedly.

Their fears were allayed when Liam I Woldson and Mia Angelica Woldson were born at 3:45 that afternoon, weighing in a just over five pounds each. The Malls were grandparents.

All vitals were fine, despite their smaller size, and the new grandparents each picked up their new grandchildren. I held Mia in his arms, gently caressing her silky hair. She barely could open her eyes, and her little cries almost sounded like a new puppy. Liam was as bald as a cue ball, but Angela didn’t mind.

I looked with love at Mia. “I think she just became my favorite granddaughter.”

He looked over at Angela, holding Liam, “You’re beautiful, grandma.” He told her. “Your glow is radiant, you’ve never been lovelier.”

He laid his granddaughter into the bassinet and leaned toward Angela to give her a kiss.

“I’ve never been happier in my life,” he told her.

“I’m pregnant.”