Recent Ritual

Reilly sits on the couch. He usually has his laptop, looking up his grades, reading for class, planning lessons, or catching up on the local news. Sometimes the television plays in the background, news or Food Network or the Jazz game.

I start walking toward him from across the room. He sets his computer aside and puts his hand up, palm facing me.

01

Like a magnet, Reilly’s hand draws my tummy toward it. I can’t stop walking.

03

While I walk, sometimes I say in a high pitched voice, “Da-da?” Sometimes I point to my tummy and state the obvious, “There’s a baby in here!” And as my tummy nears Reilly’s hand, there’s giddy anticipation. Energy. Electricity. The gravity of this growing ventral orb strengthens when the distance between us decreases. The world seems to stop, but Reilly and I do not take our eyes off each other.

05

The palpable focus switches from Reilly’s eyes when his palm and my tummy finally make contact. I can tell that Baby knows that Daddy’s right there.

07

Then Reilly and Baby spend a few moments of quality time together. I stand by and adore this interaction.

08

This has easily become one of my favorite activities. I am grateful that we’re already hanging out so much.