Friday, March 16, 2007

maybe my biggest regret ever

As much as I bitch and complain about the DC metropolitan area, I don’t regret moving here most of the time. Sure, I’ll never, EVER get used to the weather (and today is a prime example of the yuckiness that is the weather in this area), but I do enjoy the city and all that it has to offer. And if I had never moved here, I would probably never have met the friends I have here (and I definitely wouldn’t have met Jesse and we all know how important he is to me). But occasionally, I wish that I had never come here. And one of those occasions occurred last night.

I had just gotten home from an evening at the gym. The gym and I are becoming better acquaintances after a couple of weeks of sporadic visits. I came home exhausted, but looking forward to good night of TV that included Ugly Betty and NCAA basketball. Just as I was getting settled to watch Ugly Betty, my mom called.

Mom: Hi, baby. (yes, she still calls me that even though I’m almost 30).
OCgirl: Hi, mami. Can I call you back? I was just about to start watching Ugly Betty.
Mom: Ok, I just want you to talk to someone really quick.
OCgirl: Ok.
Mom: Hold on.

*Muffled sounds like someone awkwardly holding on to the phone*

Serena Rose (my niece): HI!
OCgirl (very, very emotional): Oh my God. Hi Serena! Hi baby!
Serena Rose (sounding like the happy 2-year-old she is): HI!
OCgirl: Oh wow. You’re on the phone. I love you, Serena!
Serena Rose: OK!
OCgirl: awww….
Serena Rose: OK! BYE, BYE!

*fighting back the lump in my throat as Serena hands the phone to my mom*
OCgirl: Oh wow, so she can talk on the phone.
Mom: Yeah, and she also says uh-huh like she’s listening and understanding what everyone is saying.
OCgirl: Oh that’s cute.
Mom: I just wish you could see her. It’s like we meet a whole new aspect of her personality every week.
OCgirl: Yeah, I bet.
Mom: Well, I’ll let you go. I just wanted you to talk to Serena. Enjoy your show.
OCgirl: Thanks, mom. I love you.
Mom: I love you too.

riding in the car is fun

I closed my phone and immediately wished I was home. At that moment, I hated myself for leaving my family and not being around to watch Serena Rose grow up. I’ve missed everything, all of those little milestones. If I had never moved, I could’ve been there to see the milestones. I am her aunt. I just want to be there for her.

My mom tells me that she shows Serena pictures of me all the time so she doesn’t forget me between visits. I think this contributed a lot to her being comfortable with me while I was home for Christmas (the previous visit involved some reacquainting time). But it saddens me that she would have to do that at all.

I want to be there when she starts going to school. I want to be there when she learns to ride a bike. I want to be there when she needs help with her math homework. I want to comfort her when she gets teased at school. I want to take her to her first (of many) USC football game. I want to be the person she turns to when she needs to talk to someone about sex.

But I can’t do these things unless I move back home.


Aileen said...

I can completely relate to this post! I relocated to DC to be closer to my nephews and niece...Luckily, I've fallen in love with the area, too.

lizzie said...

thanks for the comment, aileen. i'm glad you've come to love the DC area. it really is a great place to live.

minus the weather, of course.

Sharkbait said...

I am in the same boat with my 2 nephews. I always feel so disconnected from them when I go home to visit...but I write them letters and color them pictures and send them in the mail. This way they get fun mail from the fun aunt, and they know I am thinking of them.

But like above, I love the area too.

Andy said...

don't forget that you can still be a great aunt from far away. I have an uncle that lives 25 mins away that I don't ever talk to. He missed birthdays, holidays, everything. You're gonna be that fun aunt that she gets to travel to see some summer :)

lizzie said...

sharkbait--that's a good idea! thanks!

andy--i appreciate your positive outlook. that's definitely something i can look forward to.