We stayed at Mom’s until 7ish last night and then brought Anna home with us to spend the night before we all meet up at the zoo here in a bit. (16 of us including 11 kiddos)
So, everything’s fine. All four girls are in bed by 8:20, chatting peacefully and quietly amongst themselves. I’m talking to Gabe on the couch when Ava comes downstairs crying like all get out. “What’s wrong?” I ask. “Anna (sniff, sniff, sob) hurt Livi’s feelings (sniff, sniff, sob), and it’s making me soooo sad (sob, sob, sob)!!”
Oh, brother. I already have a strong feeling that Ava is over-reacting. I follow her upstairs. Poor Anna is lying there in Ava’s bed, confused look on her face.
Me: What did Anna say to Livi?
Ava: Not to Livi! Shelby! (her baby doll)
Me: Shelby?! Anna hurt Shelby‘s feelings??!
Ava: She said she was wearing underpants! (sniff, sob, sob)
Ava: It’s a diaper!
Me: Ava Marie! Anna didn’t know that! She was not trying to hurt your feelings!
Ava: Yes she was! She said it with a look on her face that I didn’t like! I want her to go sleep with Livi!!
(this goes back and forth for some time)
I try to reason with her and put poor Anna at ease. When Ava gets over-tired, there is barely any hope of getting your logic into her brain pores. One person alone can do it. I drag her, crying, down to Gabe.
He works his magic. It takes awhile, but she finally calms down and begins to see the light. The “diaper” is purple, looks like underpants to the average bystander. Ava hates the word “underpants” apparently. Well, Anna doesn’t say “panties” because she has 2 brothers. “Everybody pack an extra pair of panties!” wouldn’t fly in their house. She finally accepts the fact (or says she does) that Anna’s comment was completely innocent and free of malice.
Anna decides to sleep with Livi. (who can blame her?) By 9:00, they’re all asleep and beautiful. And when I peek in at them, I can’t help but wonder where I could find another little girl (or two) who needs adopted. I would just take Anna, but her family is kind of attached to her (and rightly so).
Really quick, and then I’d better get a move on, or I’ll be late to the zoo. We’re leaving Mom’s last night, and Ethan keeps hugging me and kissing me and telling me “I don’t want you to leave, Aunt Marla!” Awww, so sweet. Well, it’s really time to go, so one last kiss and hug. He starts bawling and wailing. Gavin chimes in. They’re a slobbery mess. “Aaaaaaaaaaunt Maaaaaaaaaaaaaarla!!! Don’t goooooooooooooo!” Poor Mom and Dad.
Then all of a sudden, I’m stricken with stomach pains and have to go to the bathroom. I apologize for delaying the inevitable departure. I can hear all the sobbing through the bathroom door. Six minutes later, we’re walking out to the van. I’ve never seen those 2 boys so upset. In between crying for me, they mention Mommy and Daddy. As much as I’d like to think they adore me like no other, they were very worn out from our big two days and missing Mom and Dad too.
I called Mom later that night, and she said the bawling lasted 30 minutes after I left, no one would listen to reason, and she was about to pull her hair out. (the boys must be related to Ava)
Mom said Gavin (he’s 2) kept saying through his tears, “My people are gone! I want to see my people! My people!” Mom asked who his “people” were. “Aunt Marla and Livi and Ava and Nina and Anna…” I love it.
I’m outta here, peeps! Hugs to you on this gloriously sunny Thursday!