Living in China, I wasn’t able to see my daughter Hannah progress in her pregnancy except through social media and two brief visits. Arriving in Boise from Manhattan last week and walking her around Target at 10 p.m. to try and induce labor made it all real. Holy Crap-I’m a Nai Nai now! But I’m too young to be the “G.. word” and I live so far away–how can this possibly work? As Hannah often tells me, “Mom, it’s not all about you!” Really? I thought it was..
Taking the assignment far, far away from family would be tough, sure, but I never expected that there would be a little Mia coming this quickly. Hannah and Mike have been married almost two years but she’s only just turned 23. I thought I would get away with a few years working overseas before I would enjoy this wonderful experience. Why didn’t they consult me first before beginning a family?? Oh, right, it’s not about me and my work schedule. Okay, I get it. Maybe.
Luckily, work brought me closer and allowed me to be here for Mia’s arrival. So at least I didn’t have to miss all of her life like I will after I return to China. Damn. After all the visitors in the hospital monopolizing little Mia and Thom was the worst by far, hardly sharing at all, I finally got to spend some quality time holding her once we got them all home. Our little one has slightly red hair in keeping with her Irish lineage of the O’Dwyers on Thom’s side plus her daddy’s coloring as well. The ginger runs strong in her. That she will be spoiled is an understatement. Her nursery already bursts with everything and more that any baby could every wish for or desire. Her Mama is a fashionista and so shall Mia be. Her substantial feet will be shod in the most trendy shoes with outfits to match. Hannah is a master of finding bargains online at various sites.
We will be launching an online business soon (more to come) and guess who will be the one and only model and namesake for our venture? Thank goodness she is so pretty! Yes, obviously I’m prejudiced but let’s face it, there are not so pretty babies out there that eventually grow into their looks but come out of the womb needing some time to adjust before they face the world.
So, on this Mother’s Day, I am now a Nai Nai. I helped my gorgeous, smart, talented daughter and her equally wonderful husband take Baby Mia home from the hospital to meet her animal siblings, Ollie the Great Dane and Izaak the Vizsla plus the ridiculously hairy cat, Detective Stabler. This brood went from being the “babies” of the family to just animals. Sorry, lady and gents but you are no longer the sole object of your parents affections. Move aside because that little bundle with a bow in her hair just took priority though you will all still be loved. Loving and protecting Mia is now your primary job vs. running after squirrels and chewing bones. Ollie & Izaak may get a little more variety in their diet as Mia starts eating solid food in the years to come, which will inevitably fall to the floor or into open mouths as they quickly learn where to position themselves to take advantage of feeding time. Yum–Cheerios and other delicious finger food flying your way soon! Puppies–please try to keep Mia out of your food bowl. Unlike Thom, who not only let Hannah eat dog food but staged it to take a picture because he thought it was so funny, Ollie and Izaak need to guard their food well because I am pretty sure that dog food can’t be good for babies and must taste horrible.
While we’re visiting this week, I’ll be working hard as my schedule is overwhelming right now but I’ll find time to hold Mia and help with the dogs, who need to run daily to be happy. Taking them out to frolic on the hills around Boise off leash, we hiked for miles on Mother’s Day enjoying the fresh air and blue skies. Boy, it will be so hard to leave here and go to Beijing on Saturday but go I will because I have a family to support and responsibilities to fulfill. Quite frankly I’m not sure how but I will find a way to make it work and be a good Nai Nai to Mia. One day I hope she will enjoy listening to stories about her crazy Nai Nai’s adventures in China, which will inspire her to see the world. Your Nai Nai loves you, Mia.