In the evening I sit on the steps that go from the kitchen down to the living room, and I want to take a picture.
For Instagram, you know. This moment is perfect, and I want to remember it. If perfect food goes on Instagram, shouldn’t perfect moments?
Because there is Mike, with Caleb on his feet, dancing to Billy Joel’s Piano Man.
Gabriel jumps from couch to couch to coffee table.
Abel dances around his daddy and two brothers, running and skipping.
But Caleb’s worn out sweatpants are sagging down. His t-shirt is dirty.
Then there’s Gabriel who still has a considerable amount of food on his face, with a generous helping of snot wiped over and around it.
Abel’s one sock is falling off and the other one is pulled up high over his pants.
I don’t have a white wall, and they always do so well on Instagram.
So I sit here, looking as hard as I can. Sitting in the 3-D picture and it’s going viral in my heart.
To this perfect moment that looks so incredibly imperfect.
I send a laugh to Gabriel, who is telling me about the dragon he will kill. Dancing and falling because he is, after all, my son. Therefore, more than a little clumsy.
He looks back to see if I am listening and I say yes, I nod and I smile, laughing. I put down my phone, put down the article on a Sobibor-survivor to look at the little person in front of me that has only been here on this planet for 4 years. Never been here before in all the many years the planet has been around. A piece of me and a piece of my very dearest of dearests, and a whole lot of pieces that God wrote and made just for this little human. Something young that gives this painful world wonder and love and loud laughter.
Caleb’s laugh is still a delicious baby laugh, his little foot slides away and daddy puts it back on his own foot.
Abel shouts through the round hole in the brick wall that is so perfect for family pictures, that he is the fastest in the whole world. His hair is standing out in all directions it possibly could. He’s covered in a little layer of sweat, as usual, from all the running.
And I don’t even take a single picture because this moment feels like so many more words, impossible to capture in a picture. And I LIKE it.