Meazi Suspended-Ugly Cry #9

There have been many things that have set me off during the holidays, things like my sister Kate meeting my children for the first time, things like my brother-in-law Mark meeting my children for the first time. There have been many moving things.

Ugly Cry #9 happened on a morning that started off like many other mornings. Steven was home. We got up. I started to get Melese's breakfast ready. Meazi went into her closet to get dressed. (We continue to let Meazi wear whatever she wants. I think that these are battles that we don't need to fight, as long as she is warm enough).

She came out in her princessa dress-up clothes. She likes to wear them to breakfast sometimes. I had been looking through our huge binder of cds for some Christmas music to play on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day. We started having a dance party. Steven would pick a cd, then Meazi would pick a cd. I danced with Melese, Steven danced with Meazi. I went to the other room to change Melese and heard Meazi exclaim,"Daddy! I like it! I like that Johhny Clegg!" Steven put on what is definitely the world's gayest music, Erasure. They danced like crazy.

Meazi likes a lot of the music that we have. She is a fan of Van the Man (hence her interest in the saxophone) and Michael Franti. She loves the song Shaking the Tree by Peter Gabriel and Youssou N'Dour. She could do without the Jackson Browne. She loves Beyonce and Gigi. Our dance party continued for some time.

Meazi paged through the binder. She found two cds, one with a big #1 on it, and the other with a big #2 on it. It was this album. The first song Angelika Suspended began. Meazi said, "Huppy," to Steven, which means she'd like to be picked up. He picked her up and they danced. She was still wearing that pink dress-up dress. I was holding Melese and we danced too. Within minutes Meazi was fast asleep on Steven's chest. Steven continued to dance while singing to her softly. Song after song played. This is a beautiful album. They stayed like that for over an hour. Finally Steven moved to the rocker, we played the second cd, and she continued to sleep on him.

I am not sure which part of this made me cry. I was happy just to be able to hold my son and feel his breathing. Maybe it was the violin? Steven and I had actually seen this band in NYC one hundred years ago when we were just dating. I was thinking about that too. I think that what struck me the most was that the last time I had seen Meazi fall asleep on Steven like that was the night we took the kids back to the guest house with us in Ethiopia. Meazi cried and cried that night. Her sobs were the most distressing and heart-wrenching sounds that I had ever heard. Steven just held her for hours. He was stuck in a kind of awkward sitting position on the bed. He just held her tightly as all of that grief, and fear, and loss, came pouring out of her. After hours of crying, she finally fell asleep. He continued to hold her.

This dancing, in our living room, was the first time since then that I have seen him holding her while she slept. It was the dancing, and the breakfast, and the laughter, that made her sleepy this time. Her face was so peaceful, her arms stayed clasped around his shoulders.

I wept happy tears that I was a mother, and that I had children to dance with, these children, and that Meazi loves her daddy, and that Meazi loves Van Morrison, and that Steven and I were still a couple. I wept happy tears that she was fed, and clothed, and healthy. But I was also crying because I know that her story will not change. What has happened to her will not change. She will always be that girl on that uncomfortable bed, in a room not her own, in that guest house, sobbing.

She has changed, but she is the same.

She will always be a girl who has lost everything, and I will always be her mother.

And so I wept.

This is the only version I could find of the song. It is someone's homemade video. I suggest closing your eyes, and just listening to it. The whole album is gorgeous.

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