Iris has taken her first steps. A few times. Tiny, teeny tiny steps. I would love to go back four months and tell myself, “Iris walks. Her left leg works.” Here I have been worrying this whole time. Physical therapy evaluation and everything.  (because one dr. was worried too) She just crawl-dragged that left leg forever, but when she started to stand, it got stronger.

She squatted and stood, squatted to standing and eventually the right leg was strong enough to let the left one step and the left is just barely strong enough to hold the weight for a half second- and then she’s down. Still, that counts as first steps.

 I’m sure its very evolutionarily sound to worry as a mother, it is good to protect yoru brood. Probably the Jew in me is the extra worry that throws me over the edge, the edge of serenity, about medical things-our mysterious bodies. But many times and for many topics, I am less worried than many parents. I didn’t worry she would stop breathing and die as a newborn. I didn’t worry she wasn’t being fed enough.   I have never tried to protect her from bumps and bruises. There are few because she was somehow (thank you, donor) blessed with excellent balance and body-awareness. When she does get hurt, she is tough, rarely cries, and wants to do it again and get it right this time! She is a fearless climber.

But, those mysterious bodies of ours! Iris’s body seems to need less sleep than most. We are getting occasionally some good nights now with 2, 3 and one 4hr chunk of consecutive sleep (at 15months). Slow, turtle-esque progress for which we are grateful.

And my own mysterious body. This is a week of drs appts I have been avoiding. After a week of acute neck pain that has been going on intermittently now 8 years after an injury, my chiropractor is sending me to a pain management dr. Why do I have massage and physical therapy and chiro and the condition never goes away- I worry.

The allergist- are there any new drugs are treatments besides all of the ones I have become immune to, or do I have to go live in the desert all summer or become a hermit- I worry? The Dermatologist- what is this mutating thing on my arm, ringworm or just excema- I worry.  The child in me does not want to go to any of these Drs and believes that Drs can’t help me, won’t help me, are full of shit, might give me treatment that hurts. The parent in me makes me go anyway.

I am worried about our bushtits. Bushtits are teeny tiny birds who weave elaborate pouch-like nests of moss and lichen. I almost cut down a branch of a rose bush which was leaning into the walkway until I head the tiny chicks inside peeping relentlessly and high-pitched; the nest was hanging on the precarious branch.

So instead of chopping, I propped that silly branch up with a tomato stake and a rubberband. I did not finish pruning the roses which are three-quarters of a year overdue for pruning and tall as trees. I was worried the babies would be disturbed if I was too close. I was worried the parents would abandon the nest and chicks (see a previous post). So I watch both parents feed the chicks, from a distance and I worry someone will carelessly walk the path and toss the branch. I worry the dog will be curious. I worry a crow will be menacing.

On the other side of the house, the song-sparrows in the holly tree out my bedroom window are so noisy I can barely think. They make it nearly impossible for Iris to go down for a nap- they are that loud. And that is on top of the continuous hammering of the remodel next door. At least the birds are abundance. Abundance is an antidote for worry. Specifically, gratefulness about abundance. We have cut roses and new dahlias and ready broccoli and snap peas and rainbow chard and dill and parsley and basil and tomatos buds up the wazoo. When I immerse in those things, the worry goes away for a minute.