My sister-in-law gave birth to her second son two weeks ago. My 14 year old son and 16 year old daughter drove to the hospital to see him. Leila had just sent him back to the nursery and I'm so bossy I told her to get him back so I can bother him. She did. He was brought in with his eyes wide open and alert.
I immediately fell in love with him.
Leila was slightly high on Percocet and was absolutely hilarious. She informed us that little Niko had been sleeping all day because he'd been circumcised. Jacob looked up from holding him and asked, "What is 'circumcised'?" I suddenly felt like a failure of a mother. Leila laughingly informed him that it means that he'd had his Brit Malah. Jacob looked even more confused so I clarified it for him by calling him "Yaakov" and asking him if knew he used to have more skin on his. . . He somehow intuited I was going to say something offensive and placed his hands firmly on his ears while singing loudly, "La! La! La! La!"
None of us are Jewish but Leila is from the country of Georgia where she was a practicing member of a Christian Orthodox congregation. They stand for three hours or more for their services which is why she boasts about her freakishly strong legs. For the record, Leila has only recently started shopping in the junior department in stores. She graduated from the children's department. I kid not.
Leila and I reminisced on Niko's brother's baptism which I had no forewarning of the ritual. I watched, fascinated, while Father Justin chanted, lit incense, had the godparents spit over the banister to ward off evil, and reminded Leila how Luka cried and cried throughout the ceremony. Right until he fell asleep in his godmother's arms. Which was just about the time he was undressed, the baptistry was uncovered, and Luka was baptised by immersion. I was not expecting him to be immersed three times. Luka was not expecting it, either. He was just about the cutest, angriest 6 week old I'd ever seen. I really, really, really hope we are invited again to the baptism. There is nothing cuter than a naked, indignant baby with fuzzy hair.
On the way out to the car and on the elevator, I explained to Jacob what circumcision involves. He turned green at the gills and was every bit as indignant as his cousin had been in the church. I wished I had a a camera to record his expression and the way he stomped out of the elevator exclaiming, "I thought I was BORN this way!"
Nice outburst. I wonder what the people in the lobby thought as I gave an apologetic grin and wave and ran out the door.
Another glaring example of how I have ruined my son's childhood.