The kitchen was so clean, the counters did not have random bills, magazines and pictures on it. The sink was empty from all glasses and dishes. It was a clear sign that either a maid had been here or we were about to go out of town. We always try and clean the house up a little bit right before we leave so we don’t come home to a mess. This weekend we were heading to one of our favorite getaways, Chateau Elan. Chateau Elan is a local Atlanta Spa, and winery, that we go to on special occasions and this upcoming occasion was none other than our one-year wedding anniversary.
“Oh! Oops, no I forgot!” my wife Laura exclaimed. “Can you get it?”
“It’s okay,” I said while holding Mauldin. He was resting on my right shoulder. I had just changed him into a little white onesie that had little green alligators showcased randomly.
“Here,” I said; handing off Mauldin like he was a bag of groceries from Publix.
“Go ahead and be putting him in his car seat carrier and I will go get it.”
“Sounds good.” Said Laura. She took Mauldin and with her other free hand pushed her oversized, black sunglasses up onto the top of her head in effort to see in the darkness that was our house. As I hit the stairs running I could hear her baby talking to our son, Mauldin, just in a way that only the mother of my own child could do and it not be insanely annoying.
(Insert cutesy, high pitch voice)
“Are you ready to go to Nana & Papa’s?” she started.
“Oh yes you are, oh yes, we are going to be happy aren’t we? Uh hu! Yes, yes, yes!”
Her voice trailed off the closer to the nursery I reached. I had to get this video for him because it seriously is one of the only videos he really pays attention to… Of course, we are not sure what is going through his mind, but we expect it is something knowledgeable and very advanced. (insert sarcasm).
I walked into my son’s nursery and the room is lit up, on the left side of the room, because the window blinds were open and the mid-morning sun was shining through. It was if the light was trying to reach out to Mauldin’s closet. The light beams hit the floor and bent up the white closet doors. The illumination reached up halfway; highlighting some of his cute clothes through the crack in the middle of the two doors. You could see hints of blue, red and yellow from a pair of overalls that showcase Winnie-the-Pooh. He wore it during his first photo session at Babies R-us. Whenever I see them I immediately crack a smile because I am reminded of how tiny he was that day…
I reached out… the light cast on my right arm as I opened the portable DVD player that rest on top of the antique cabinet that is home to many receiving blankets, sheets and sleepers. To my dismay the DVD was not there, but as I scanned the top of the dresser I saw it lying in the middle of Baby Bach and Baby Monet. It struck me, “what would it hurt to bring all three DVD’s?” I like to make sure he has as many comforts from home as I can. We were told not to bring diapers, blankets or wipes because my in-laws had all this in stock at their home. My in-laws have three grandchildren so the amount of diapers they keep on hand is staggering. However, each child is a different age, 4 ½, 2 ½ and 11 weeks, so, I’m sure, it does come with a bit of financial complication, but I just don’t ask questions... I am appreciative. My parents are the same way… thank the Lord for caring Grandparents. We packed the little man clothes and breast milk and his DVD’s.
I contemplated packing more, just in case, but decided not to and turned and headed for the door ready to hit the road so my wife, Laura, and I could make it to our destination, Chateau Elan. This would be the first time we would be leaving Mauldin over night. It hit me on the way down the stairs, we have to leave the little guy… we haven’t left him over night before… I kept saying this in my head over and over.
“It is going to be okay.” Laura said.
“What?” I replied.
“He is going to be alright. I know you,” She continued… “I know what you are thinking.”
I stood there holding three Disney Baby Einstein DVD’s and my grip was growing more and more firm as if it were a metaphor for Mauldin and not wanting to let go.
“He is ready to go and so am I.” Laura said.
I nodded with an affirmative “Yes.”
Laura grasped my left hand and leaned in and kissed me. It was at that moment that I knew I had nothing to worry about. My wife has the uncanny knack to always put my mind at ease no matter the circumstance. So, what happened? Well, lets just say the weekend was perfect, well we did miss our exit going to Chateau Elan and going to Laura's parents house, but I will say if that was the only hiccup our weekend exalted then I will say it was close to perfect.
But, you can blame the "exit" issue on me... well not totally on me... it was a joint oversight.