Maggie left for San Francisco this morning. Her last few days with us were marked by sadness, and stress, and tension. Some of that was what's happening in the house, but she found out that one of her coworkers was the deadly victim of what's believed to be domestic violence, and her Grammy is in the hospital, and she found out another acquaintance had gone missing (turned out she was on the lam with a stolen parrot, which turns the story into a very weird, funny one), and the massacre in Las Vegase wasn't a terribly relaxing week.

Anyway, I took her to the airport at 4:30 am, got home, slept a bit longer, and woke Cam up at 6:15 like normal. Drank coffee and chatted, like normal. Tom Petty died yesterday, and I told her that someone at work had asked me what my favorite Petty song was.

Her: "What did you tell him?"

Me: "Well, what was yours?"

Her: "American Girl."

Me: "That's what I said last night, although now I'm thinking it might be 'The Waiting Is The Hardest Part.'"

Her: "There's also," she starts, hesitating for just a moment, "well, we were in Interlochen with the band. Maggie was still a baby, and I was nursing, and I was in the room, laying on the bed with her. "'Free Fallin''" came on, and I started singing along with it." Here, she raises her hands above her head and looks up, as if she's laying on her back holding Maggie above her. "Freeeee fallllin'," I'd sing, and pretend that she was falling, and Maggie was laughing that baby laugh, and I'd sing and she'd laugh..."

She's smiling and smiling and smiling at this point in the story, and at that moment I don't think I could love her more than I do.

Sigh. That's what I'm going to miss most of all. These tiny little moments, where her guard drops just a bit and she lets me see her.

AuthorMatthew Riegler