Thursday, March 17, 2005

T-Bird (Part IV)

Nothing could have prepared me for my return to Michigan. Nothing. The nicest description I can muster is that T-Bird had morphed into a cross between a Mama Grizzly, a barracuda, and a King Cobra. Baby Blues? Bite your tongue. Post partum depression? Pfffffffft! Severe psychosis? Getting warm. Wanna hold the baby? Ummm... no. Change his diaper? Feed him his bottle? Ummmmm... no. Nothing anyone did was good enough, if they were allowed to do it at all. Even Bob...especially Bob. I woke up at 3:00 a.m. one morning in time to hear her scream at him, "Its too fucking hot!" Whoaaaa... I drifted back off but woke up when she screamed, "Now it’s too fucking cold!" And "WHAP," the sound of a full baby bottle hitting the wall. What made this worse was I had Nate with me. Nate was three years old and curious about J3 and I watched as Nate approached him in his bouncy chair. Nate reached out and touched J3's hand, causing J3 to startle, a completely normal response for a month old baby. Yet, hell hath no fury as a mother who believes I have allowed my son to ‘scare the shit!’ out of hers. I swear to God, I thought she was going to hit Nate. God help her, she didn’t. She would be dead and I would be blogging from prison. I heard, for the next four days, how I had allowed Nate to scare J3. Reasoning with her? Out of the question. I had watched in abject horror as she watched every. little. move. Nate made. I pointed out to her that she would stand and wait and watch for him to do something she didn’t approve of so she could jump his shit. "Well, this is my house." "Well, he’s my son and I don’t need you to tell me that he has to stand six inches outside the kitchen when he can sit with me." By the end of the week, Nate asked plaintively, "Can we go home now Mom?" Damned if I wasn’t ready. This episode almost ruined our friendship. A fact she’ll freely admit to this day. She’ll freely admit she didn’t deal with Tori’s death until J3 was born. She’ll freely admit she was neurotic. Okay, she still says post partum depression... trust me... neurotic doesn’t come close. The kicker was Nate. When T-Bird came to WV around Thanksgiving, I had pulled out all of my baby clothes to see if she could use anything. My son, Mr. Energy, sat playing with a toy, his back turned to her. He was so quiet, I forgot he was there! Forgot! MY hyper boy was there. Oh, and she didn’t bring J3 with her. Talk about a slap in the face. Yet, Nate’s reaction to her did not go unnoticed. Things had improved some by her next birthday. She had calmed down a bit and was making plans to move back to WV. I can’t say I was overly thrilled but I did offer to house them for the two week transition period. Three adults, two children, less than a thousand square feet... enough furniture for two households. Oy. T-Bird was burned by a kitchen accident when she was a child. It permanently scarred her left shoulder and breast so she was a stickler for kids staying out of the kitchen at her house. But Nate was used to following me everywhere. I used it as an opportunity to teach him the right and wrong way to do things. Yeah, so he could scramble eggs at 4 ... oh well. This is what had gotten him in so much trouble at T-Bird’s apartment. The kitchen. So, when T-Bird and her extended family showed up, Nate was out the door and he met T-Bird halfway across the lawn and said, "This is my house and I’ll go in the kitchen anytime I want." Yep. It was going to be an interesting two weeks.
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