Old Dog, New Tricks

30 07 2009

When my sister and I were little girls various relatives and family friends bought us dolls as people tend to do for little girls. While we were similar enough to each other to be mistaken for twins, we couldn’t have been more different in our reception to a baby doll. I couldn’t be bothered. My sister, on the other hand, fawned over them. She cuddled them. She nurtured them as well as an inanimate object can be nurtured. When my dad bought her a Peaches n’ Cream Barbie, she brushed Barbie’s hair until it started to fall out. My Pink and Pretty Barbie had a much more tragic fate, one that I won’t go into lest people start to back away slowly when they see me (assuming they don’t already do that).

All of this is to say that it was no surprise when my sister announced she was pregnant. Not the first, second, or third time. It only seemed natural. And, while it was always clear she would be a wonderful mother, I am still frequently awestruck over just how extraordinary she is at the job.

What is a surprise is that I am sitting here right now with a baby of my own sleeping peacefully on my lap. Azita was officially born on January 7th of this year, but she was actually born in February 2008 on an overnight visit to my sister in North Carolina. I was attending a conference not too far from where she lived and couldn’t resist taking the opportunity to spend the night with my sister and my three favorite little kids. Coincidentally, my niece came down with an ear infection that night, which called for a  visit to urgent care. I, of course, volunteered to stay home with the boys. We were only alone for a couple hours, but in that time we played with every single toy they owned, went through all of the clothes in their closets, drew pictures, and read all of their Star Wars books. And, it was in that couple hours that my youngest nephew crawled up on my lap, pointed to Darth Vader and said “Maman, look. It’s Darth Vader.” Yes. He called me Maman. Not just once, but over and over as he pointed to every single character in his Star Wars character encyclopedia.

Well, that was it for me. One month later I was pregnant and began to morph into a mother. A year and a half later, I’m pretty sure that metamorphosis is complete.  I’m not saying that I consider or will ever consider purchasing a minivan or wearing mom jeans. But Azita consumes my every thought and feeling, and best of all she hasn’t started hating me yet. In fact, I’m pretty sure she loves me. At least that what her eyes tell me when she wakes up in the morning, smiles at the sight of my face, and reaches out to touch my face. I may not be a natural like my sister, but I’m learning the job and loving it. It turns out that this old dog really can learn new tricks.

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Long time, no write

28 07 2009

So we had the best of intentions to blog. It was all about us sharing our unique little take on the world. Coming at life together but from very different places. Alas, that was more than a year ago. How times have changed. Our backgrounds — one from small town midwest, one from big-city East Coast — had their asses wiped clean Jan. 7, 2009.

On that cold winter day in Arlington County, just up the road from our condo, Azita Safavian Hughlett was born… I’ll let Zahra share anything about that for the world to read. And I’ll share a bit more of it as time goes by.

Now, I think it’s good to set the stage: Two parents in love with a beautiful princess of a daughter who will likely grow up to ask me: How the hell did you and maman meet? Well, Azi, we met the day of the Gay Pride Parade in Baltimore. Your maman didn’t think I existed. It’s a long and wonderful story and now you are a big part of it.

Roger