A frown furrows my brow as I concentrate. I perch on the very edge of my seat, hunched over my keyboard, leaning towards my computer screen. For moments at a time I am lost in whatever small piece of work I am trying to complete around the multitude of 'MOMMY' chores that fill my day.
About my office:
It is made up of a space measuring about 6' X 6', tucked in a room that once served as a pantry in some former incarnation. On one side it has floor to ceiling shelves and drawers, and they've been here a LONG time. The west wall has a small window that opens and looks out over our Paul's Scarlett Hawthorne tree, and this is the view I savor every time I am working.
The other side of the expansive 6' gets really interesting. A previous owner decided to purchase a mammoth fridge with two doors that open out for the fridge portion, and a freezer drawer on the bottom. Great when you have a family as large as we do. Unfortunately, this behemoth did not fit in it's designated spot in the kitchen, which is the next room over from the pantry, so that enterprising former owner decided to cut a hole in the wall into the pantry and jimmy the back 6" of the fridge into what is now my office.
It's cramped or cosy, depending on the day, and how much sprawl I need to finish whatever project I am working on.
Today it's cramped because my nearly three year old is drawing on my already spacially challenged desk beside me, and my 1-1/2 year old is climbing the spare chair to move the magnetic clips holding the work orders for our business to the back of the fridge. (I can find a way to make anything work it seems.)
I murmer approvingly, if absent-mindedly, each time Liam asks me what I think of his drawing. Behind me magnets fall and Eamonn climbs doggedly down from his chair, retrieves them, climbs back up onto the chair, and replaces the magnets on the obliging back of the fridge. This game is good for keeping him busy for at least ten minutes.
So you can picture me entering A/P and reconciling our business bank acct with Liam about 6" to my left, sharing the desk, and Eamonn no more than a foot behind me playing with the magnets.
I use the top of the copier for holding the invoices I have already entered and billed, the tiny space above my keyboard for those waiting to be entered, and a series of creative wall pockets for those that I most likely won't get to today.
I pause for a moment and daydream about what it will be like in a few short years when they are both in school full time and I will have this space, (or a bigger one) all to myself. I think about the TIME, blocks of UNINTERRUPTED T I M E, to take care of whatever job I need to do without any interrruptions or distractions.
Moments later I am brought out of this reverie by the touch of two soft little toddler hands slowly rolling the back of my shirt up and a babysoft little cheek being pressed gently against the bare skin on my right hip above my pants. A sigh of contentment issues forth. Eamonn has tired of his magnet game, climbed down off of his chair, and climbed up behind me on mine. He is laying sideways on the chair behind me, utterly content with the little bit of hip he has managed to expose.
This is a baby love at it's finest!
Eamonn is my fifth baby and my last. His was the only birth I had where my baby and I were left alone, skin to skin, for the first full hour. It was quite literally Heaven!
As a result of that first full skin contact, (or at least that is what I believe) he continues to be quite attached to being next to my skin. Whether it's my neck, my arm, my legs if I am in shorts, he just loves to be in contact with my skin, wherever he finds it.
Eventually Eamonn turns his head slightly and blows a soft raspberry onto my hip. Giggles errupt. He repeats this two or three times. More giggles. Finally I turn around, scoop him up, and snuggle him into my neck.
I know someday soon I will be alone in my little office, enjoying the quiet and efficiency. But I will always hear the echos of baby love raspberries, remember the soft touch of toddler hands, and the distinctive smell of a new box of crayons. Of course I will enjoy the little bit of elbow room I will gain when they are both in school full time, but I know I will miss these days of the three of us, tucked into this diminished space, cosied up next to each other, loving each other up.
Work will be here always. These absolutely precious moments of baby love are fleeting and glorious. To be treasured.