Scenes That Stick
Seeing Valetta, the capital city, was a comfortable and familiar end to an exciting trip. We had taken full advantage of our three days in Malta, its walled villages and beautiful rock formations, fresh seafood restaurants and wayward aqueducts. It felt refreshing to aimlessly wander a city as we closed the trip. We took a carriage ride up and down the outer streets, strolled and talked, took pictures, and finally, as we rested atop a random staircase, leaned back and took in a rather unremarkable row of yellow apartments with green balconies. We allowed ourselves to slow down—physically and mentally—and capture the moment. As simple as that moment was, I will surely never forget it. Why it remains etched in my mind this way is uncertain to me, other than the fact that it was a rare moment where we became totally present, allowed ourselves to rest, and appreciated, together, the simple beauty of what lay in front of us.
I pick up my screaming daughter who is tightly wrapped like a burrito in her green swaddle. Chlo-rito, I’ve been calling her. It sounds too much like an STD to stick, but for now it’s perfect. I fiddle the pacifier into her mouth, and she sort of wrestles around to get it just right. I angle her body towards me, the way Kendahl taught me. I give her a few pats on her little butt and within seconds her face is losing the redness that accompanies her screams.
We sit on the couch, her eyes beginning to droop as she maintains a steady rhythm on the binkey. I look to my right and see the pack ‘n play jutting out into our living room. To the right is her little (unrecalled) Fisher-Price chair sitting on top of the dining room table; we put her in this one while we cook. A couple of bland mesh bags from a recent pantry cleaning await a trip to Goodwill. An Amazon box sits to the right of Chloe’s chair; today the car jack that I ordered came, along with a universal garage remote that I couldn’t figure out how to program. I chuckle at what a silly problem that is to have: not being able to get a third remote garage opener. I look down at Chloe, sleeping away, while Kendahl puts the sheets on the bed. Light from the kitchen steadily flows in and animates all of it: the pack ‘n play, the mesh bags, the chair, the Amazon box. This is a view that easily surpasses our Malta moment and every site we will ever see. This moment feels perfect, and in it, so does my life.