There are flowers in my house, just like two years ago, and for the same reason-- Monkey had her piano recital this past Saturday. Bringing flowers for the performer is a very Old Country thing. Two years ago my parents were in town the weekend of the recital, and so there were flowers from us, them, my sister, and, I think, even her beloved Nanny. So many flowers, all over the house. When the deadbaby flowers started to come eleven days later some of the recital flowers were still standing. I remember making sure to keep them for as long as they held out.
Two years ago it was her first recital. Sunday, January 21st. Wednesday before that my parents arrived-- my mom had a business trip in the area, and dad, who works from home, came with her to get the baby's room painted. Tuesday after the recital, one week exactly before A died, his room was fully painted. Yellow and blue this time, a change from yellow and purple of Monkey's babyhood, a brighter yellow this time too. Next day, Wednesday, they left. A week later, Wednesday the 31st, they flew back.
I was irritable and irritated the week they were here. The couch didn't help. Not the couch on which I spent a whole lot of time, but the one that was evicted from the soon-to-again-be-baby's room but not yet installed in my office because that's where the parents were sleeping, on the queen size inflatable mattress. And so the couch, in two pieces, sat in the not particularly big entry-walk space on the first floor. I had to walk on the tippy toes every time I walked by it-- me and the belly didn't fit otherwise.
I don't remember what exactly I was doing on January 26, 2007. But it was a Friday, and so we must've had a Shabbat dinner. Maybe my sister came. Or maybe she didn't, begging off on account of having been to the house entirely too many times while the parents were here. Monkey must've said "Shabbat Shalom, little brother" into my belly. For what turned out to have been the last time. I don't remember because it was, by then, so ordinary. And after the helpful but crazy that was my house the weekend before and the surrounding days, I must've been looking forward to the weekend. I don't remember much of that weekend either.
That the flowers are here now is an accident of nature-- recital this year was rescheduled from way back in December, a victim of a snow storm that had itself passed but left a complete parking ban for the neighborhood of the recital hall (a very nice room in a public library) in its wake. That when we got home the flowers spent a good long time parked on the dining room table before I finally put them in vases after Monkey was asleep, hours after we came home, that I don't think was an accident. Avoidance strategy perhaps?