Green Frog Cafe

"Living in nature, listening to the rain, Green Frog Cafe, that's where I want to be. The hemlocks are green, the creek is tricklin, there's geese on the pond, the forest sighs. Green Frog Cafe that's where I want to be, home of my soul, spirit of the mountains." Ruminations of Rhona McMahan

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Red Boots' Baby Party

Yesterday, Saturday, September 19, 2004, we participated in the baby party for Red Boots Soria. The party was held at Steven's, a friend of Gabe's (the father of Red Boots), in a beautiful apartment with a sight line view of the Manhattan Bridge, in DUMBO. It took some little preparation for the party, shared by Amanda, Jonica, Gabe, and me. A lot of Gabe's friends came, and a lot of Amanda's friends came, and one of Sara's friends came. Amanda was beautiful as the center of attention. She radiated an aura of young woman in full biological reproductive bloom. Earth Mother Goddesses seem to run in the family. People have treated Amanda with Red Boots in utero as if they were a spiritual public utility through which they could touch the renewal of the species and the hope which that brings. They talk with her on the street, saying "when are you due" and even "you shouldn't be running through traffic, you should be careful." Sometimes they touch her, sensing good luck or a nearness to the holy, like kissing the Shamrock.

At one point in the party, after many had left and it had changed to a quiet conversation kind of small group, with interesting music playing, Amanda said to me "you look pensive." I guess I may have been pensive, and if so it was probably because I was thinking of Amanda's mother in the months before Amanda's birth. I was thinking about how Sara would have participated in the party, how she would have laughed at some of the gifts and suggested names for RB, and how proud she would have been of her daughter. I remembered how it was when a baby is coming, with books to read to find out what it will be like, things to buy, changes to make in rooms and furniture, and the sense of mysterious anticipation. What will he be like?

I was very withdrawn at the party. I like to sit quietly by myself at these parties, observing and listening. I find that as the oldest person in the room by far that I have an agreeable license to stay in my own bubble if I wish. I had a sense of family, increase and continuity, as I interacted mainly with Chelsea, Jonica, Colin, Amanda, Gabe, Amber, and Shari during the party. At one point Colin, Amanda, and Jonica were sitting together on the sofa, and I on the arm of the sofa next to Colin. I looked at my children, and at Chelsea, and at Gabe who seemed so happy, and felt a kind of wondering peace. I sensed that it was a memorable moment for me, a high point, and I was conscious of how one's life rushes on into the unknown.

Many people ask me if I am "excited" at being a grandparent. In my waspish controlled way it has taken a while to come around to using the word excited to describe my feelings as I anticipate the birth of Red Boots. But I definitely am excited. I like being around children, although I sometimes take a few moments to get out of my space into a shared space with them. I like to play with children, and tell them stories, and laugh with them. I like to teach things to children. I like to get in touch with myself through children. I am somewhat concerned that RB will not like me and feel comfortable with me. My models as grandparents are my father's parents James Russell Moore and Emma Olive McGeorge Moore. They were totally grandchild oriented, loved to be with their grandchildren, doted on them, and gave them nice little gifts all the time. Other models are the grandparents of my children on my side, my mother Mary Catherine Long Moore Carr and Hugh Carr. They had a special place in their house for their grandchildren stocked with toys, and they had a beautiful 5 acre yard for them to play in. I hope that I can be as good a grandparent as the other people I have known in our family have been.

Red Boots is starting out ahead of the game with parents like Gabe and Amanda, and an aunt like Jonica, and uncle like Colin, and grand parents like Chelsea and me. That's in addition to all the family on Gabe's side out there in California. As they used to say in the Christian baptism ceremony in the Presbyterian church in which I was raised, "the congregation committs to nuturing and raising this child..."


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