The first time it happens she’s 6 months old.
Just learning how to say real words, wide smile, bright eyes, dribbling and she looks up at carol and makes the sounds “ma-ma.”
Carol freezes, looks at you and then breaks out in the biggest smile you’ve ever seen and Monica says it again, but this time with her arms stretched out wanting to be picked up. So carol picks her up and Monica grips her shirt, lays her head on her shoulder and says it one more time before dozing off, and you chuckle a little because babies. One minutes they’re full of energy the next they’re drained.
You look at carol, who is gazing lovingly at Monica and it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen. Your girls together, bonding, forming a connection it’s more than you could ever ask for.
Carol looks at you and you tell her “ put her to bed and then meet me outside.”
You sit on the porch for about five minutes then carol appears. You both say nothing for a while just looking at the sun set over the horizon and listening to the sound of the wind. You look over at her, the last light of the day shining on her face, hair blowing gently from the wind and you think, god i love this woman, cause you do. You love the way she smiles when she’s playing with Monica. How driven she is, you love her goofiness, you love her passion, you just love her and everything that comes with loving her even the not so great things.
“Yes, yes i am.”
“So mama huh?”
“Yea, mama,” and she breaks out that smile that you love so much and you melt just a little bit.
“Are you okay with her seeing you as her other mom? Cause if your not aunty carol is still on the table?” your voice trembles a little when you say that and you hope she didn’t notice.
“Ria, hey…. Honey, i'm fine with it. To be honest i love it, there is nothing more in this world that i want than to be in you and lieutenant trouble’s lives. I love you both so much and i want to be a mom to Monica.”
“Us being in a relationship doesn’t mean you are obligated to do this, you know?”
“ i know, i’m doing this because i want to. Okay?”
“Okay.” i say and nod.
“Good now come here.”
I move into her embrace, she places a kiss on my forehead, then my lips and we just stay like that until we hear Monica crying.
“Come on,” she says. “Our little girl is crying.”