"Babe, did you check the mail? I was expecting something important."
Yelling to that woman or say something loud expecting for her to decipher the words was useless. She acted like she was deaf sometimes. I love her anyways. Even if she acts like she doesn't speak English. How could I complain though? I did stutter and quite often too.
"No, just got bills. You should take care of that!"
She yelled back down from upstairs as if we were in a field somewhere. That's the mark of a true Southern woman. They always had a way of expressing feelings with extended vocal chords.
"Did you tell 'em that we moved or that I became a space alien? You know that worked with the light company!"
I yelled back up towards her. We were both being silly. Caeleiegh had ears like an owl. She started crying. Great, another soiled diaper? I didn't even understand how such a little girl could possibly create that much poop. Well, I can't complain. Mom always said I was worse than a cow when it came to generating piles for her to wipe away.
Shiloah came down stairs. It was reminiscent of her coming down the stair case at the Southside country club for our reception. She was beautiful then. She's beautiful now. That's just the thing though. I could never express to her just how captivating to the eye that she was. The woman didn't have a flaw to her. Unfortunately, she just didn't see it that way. That didn't matter though. After all, it was my job to make her feel gorgeous even when she didn't believe my words.
"Go check on her or something babe. I'm trying to check our email. Oh, look, I can make my penis bigger. You know that'll be useful. Baby girl needs a little brother to play with."
She laughed. She told me after the labor that it took to deliver Caeleiegh she wasn't having anymore. Begging was pointless with this woman. Once she had her mind made up that was the end of it. I knew I could change her mind on things because of the fact that she, apparently, listened to anything I said with the exception of her personal beauty.
"Look here cowboy. You begged and pleaded for me to have a child and I did. Now get in there and comfort your daughter. She misses you. All you do is work and play with her a little. Being a father is much more than just giving her food to eat and diapers to crap in. It's about being there when she needs you the most."
No, not another start of the "you're a daddy now" argument. Gosh, all I ever did was provide for my family. I didn't need for Shiloah to work. She did it of her own free will because she wanted to help with the finances. So, instead of falling for the trap of being lured into a heated debate I stood up from my comfy desk to go and console baby girl.
Poor Caelei, she always saw me in business attire. She probably wouldn't even recognize me with a pair of black pajama pants and me being shirtless. At least, I know the wife wasn't complaining. She always did like my body. With each step towards the door to the small room in the right corner of the house I realized that I always got bullied into these sorts of things. It's the price I paid for being outnumbered by women in my own home.
"Hey there! What's wrong? Huh? Who bothered baby girl? Hmm? Come here..."
I reached into the crib and grabbed her. I felt terrible. She was reaching out for me even before I locked eyes with her. Shiloah always said that she loved me to death. I figured it was because I was tall, strong looking and that I looked like someone who could protect her from the bad dreams and scary people. The proof was in the pudding. She stopped crying the second our skin made contact. A precious smile went across her face the moment I pressed her head against my chest.
She reached up and grabbed my glasses. It wasn't unusual that she'd do this. Still, I kept rocking from side to side just praying she doesn't start crying again. I didn't mind her mingling with my framework. She did it so often that it seemed almost a casual thing for her to do.
"See? Nothing to be scared of."
I had to check her diaper while I spoke. My little girl always had a fit when someone touched her diaper material. She didn't allow many poeple besides my mother and Shiloah to change her. It was trust issues. She wasn't used to being around a whole lot of people. There wasn't anything wrong with the diaper. I fed her. I figured it must have been a bad dream or something.
Perhaps telling her a story would make her feel better. Eight o'clock was precious time in our household. It was around the time that she went to sleep. Once she was awake chaos would be amuck trying to keep her entertained and prevent her from crying. As I took a seat into the rocking chair next to her crib I allowed her to stand up in my lap while I made up a story to tell her. She never really responded to stories from a book as much as the ones I made up for her.
"Did you know that you're special? Hmm? Have any idea how special you are? You see, you're magic. You're proof that miracles do happen."
That girl was too precious. She turned her head to the side in a confused type of look as if she actually understood what I was saying. Blah, I knew better. But she did afford me her attention as if she were anticipating what I had to say.
"You see, me and mommy are a special couple. Long ago, my race, and the race you belong to, were slaves when we first came to America. Mommy is white and a lot of white people kept us as slaves. That was mommy's ancestors though. She had nothing to do with it. Neither did grandma and grandpa. It was a long time ago. But, you see, that creates a lot of tension between our races. There's still a lot of hatred spewed out from both sides. Some white people can't seem to understand that black people, like me and you, deserve a place in this country. Some black people, again, like me and you, won't understand that the past is the past and that we should move on."
I stopped to take my glasses from her and put them back on. She looked a little sleepy so I held her in my arms. If she were not drowsy she wouldn't have allowed me to do that. I know my daughter. When she was fighting the sleep monster no attempt to put her away to dream world would be successful.
"Grandma Anne isn't a bad person but she has bad thoughts. She doesn't like me because I'm black. Grandma Tony isn't a bad person either but she doesn't like mommy because she's white. So, know what happened? Mommy and daddy fell in love. We unified our families. But see, marriage alone wasn't going to accomplish this. You were born. Neither one of your grandmas could bring themselves to be rotten enough people to hate you. So, in a sense, they were forced to love us but especially love you because you're just that special..."
Her eyes were like a weight set. Finally, time to put her to sleep. I looked up to see Shiloah standing in the door way and hugging the giant teddy bear sitting on the dresser. A smile was on her face. I stood up and sat baby girl in her crib. We both stood over it and looked down at her while she turned her head to go to sleep.
"Come on, mom isn't that bad."
My left eyebrow quirked. A chuckle escaped my lips.
"And you would also suggest that my mother was a saint that absolutely loved you. Yeah, I especially loved the way that she didn't show up for our wedding."
"Your point? My mom showed up with a bottle of wine."