It was midnight and I, being an early riser and, therefore, a terrible college kid, was already dead asleep.
Groggy and confused, I rolled over and nearly fell out of bed, wondering why an alarm was going off while it was still dark outside and why it was on my phone when I only set alarms on my desk clock.
I had a vague sense that I was forgetting something.
I picked my phone up and swiped to make the annoying noise stop. Then I realized that it was a call and I had just answered it.
“Hello?” I murmured in a soft, sleepy voice.
“Hi!” an incredibly awake voice chirped. “Want to find out who your Littles are?”
Littles? I got more than one?
The rest is hysteria.
I mean, history.
Nah. I mean hysteria.
The rest of the week was a crafting frenzy. When I wasn’t working on something for the Littles, I was studying or working on our school newspaper. Meals were irregular. Sleep was a sweet dream.
Day Three of Big/Little week, I was initiated into the English honors society, Sigma Tau Delta (STD, for short. Apparently English nerds are terrible at stringing together Greek letters). I was given a certificate and a pin. (I get a kick out of telling people I’m wearing my STD pin.) After obligingly mingling for a few minutes, I power-walked to my dorm (in heels) and began frantically painting for one of my Little’s basket. She likes “Despicable Me,” so I decided to paint a minion with the words “one in a minion.” I grabbed a scrap piece of paper to see if I could even paint a decent minion. Thankfully, I could, and I managed to successfully deliver her present. As I cleaned up, I picked up the piece of paper to throw it away.
Then I realized that I had actually painted the back of my STD certificate. (Wow, that really is a horrible acronym.)
That about sums up my week. In a figurative and also very literal way.
I was sleep deprived, stressed, and my “To-Do List” kept growing longer while my time to accomplish items on said list kept shrinking. It was the craziest week of my life.
But when I look back on it, I don’t remember any of that.
I think of the notes my Littles wrote me, telling me how much they loved their gifts and how excited they were to meet me. I think of jumping out from behind one Little and hearing her shriek, “You tricked me!” Immediately followed by, “I wanted it to be you!” I think of dragging my Big and one Little backstage to surprise my other Little after her performance and being unceremoniously kicked out. And I think of standing in the lobby, holding her family shirt, when she walked out in the reception line. I think of how surprised she was when she realized what was going on and how another cast member had to tear her away from our first family gathering to thank the audience.
I never understood childbirth before – how a woman can undergo such intense pain and forget about it when she finally gets to hold her little one.
I get it now. At least a little bit.
I love my babies. And, given the choice, I would go through the entire, chaotic week for them all over again.
I would even paint a cartoon figure on the back of a certificate of high academic accomplishment. Or, if it came down to it, not be a part of STD at all.
You know what I mean.