Today is just beautiful. The sky is so blue you could swim in it. The snow is still on the ground, and much of the space under it is pure ice. Our younger daughter has been here visiting for the last four days and she and her father went skiing today. I love that they have that to do together. She has always been "my girl". She loves her father dearly, but has always been very attached to me. She was a trauma baby when she was born, and I have always felt that was why she was so attached as a child. As a "meconium stained" baby - one that inhales their first bowl movement in the womb - she was immediately put on antibiotics and all emergency measures to remove the toxic and deadly matter from her lungs. But after about 48 hours she was not doing any better - a sign that the baby may not make it. (She was 10 lbs 4 oz, and the biggest baby in the neonatal intensive care. The nurses hate to loose those babies, who are so ready to live, to this deadly malfunction. But it often happens, as the bowel movement is so sticky.) At that point, after the C-Section, I had not had a chance to see or hold my baby since birth, and I insisted that I see her and hold her. The doctor agreed, and my husband was preparing for the worse. But I knew I just had to hold her. And sure enough as soon as I held her and started nursing her, she started to get better. She went home with me four days later - very unusual for babies with this problem. Anyway, she ended up having asthma and we spent many years with her sleeping with us (it calmed her at night), and breath treatments sometimes four times a night. All this made her very attached to me, especially. Until high school and the inevitable adolescent separation. Which, I might add, was horrendous! The more attached, the harder it is. But, thankfully, they do grow up and turn into lovely, sweet, kind, considerate, and happy 21 year old's that love to watch movies with their Mom and ski with their Dad. She is a little "hippie chick" with a large group of friends, mostly college students, that eat no meat, love music festivals, and are planning a commune in which her parents will be invited. Whether or not it actually happens is of no importance, it is the sentiment that counts.
Although, the communal living is something I think is going to make a big comeback. And I really wouldn't mind being a part of a group sharing resources. We discussed this to some extent in one of my classes on Aging - it very well may be a common way of living in the future. My husband and I have discussed buying some land in Oregon, near Portland, where the girls live, and having it be zoned for three houses. The idea of living within a few acres of my children and grandchildren makes me happy. As a child, I lived within a big German family enclave in Sacramento after my mother died. It was great having my great-grandmother within walking distance from my grandmother's house and other family members. It is wonderful for children. They also shared resources. All had gardens and shared the bounty. But some drove, some reupholstered furniture, one uncle built all the houses, etc. Not a bad life, if everyone can get along. I suppose that is the bottom line. But maybe, with the changes we are about to experience we will evolve from a society that only worries about self into one that realizes it needs the gifts that everyone brings to the table. What do you think?