Separation Anxiety: Homecoming Edition

March 17th, 2010  |  by  |  Published in Uncategorized  |  4 Comments

When I came home from the airport yesterday afternoon, things did not go quite as I’d hoped. That is, Sasha did not bound through the door into my open arms, screaming “Daddy!” Instead, she was still in the fog of sickness, drips dripping from her nose, eyes a little crusty. She was clingy and weepy and sensitive, and refused to be held by anyone but her mother. She was, in short, not the exuberant, outgoing, silly-cute child I’d missed so terribly in Italy.

Really, it was pretty awful. Like she had no idea who I was, and couldn’t trust me. I went back and forth: Was this just the illness, or had the week of illness somehow changed her personality completely? Waves of regret came over me. What a miserable father I’d been to go away for so long, and to neglect Sasha and Jean in their hour of need!

There was, however, one moment of hope, during which I briefly chased Sasha on all fours, eventually extracting a weak smile. And this morning, after an awkward diaper change and a slightly more enjoyable game of peekaboo, she even reached up her arms to me and said, “Bao-bao!” (Chinese for “hold me.”) For a little while, she even happily sat on my lap and bashed the computer keyboard, playing Alphababy, before it was time for daycare. Will she remember me when I pick her up in a few minutes? Or will I again be a stranger? If it’s the latter, at least I’ll be a stranger who plays peekaboo.


  1. Nathan says:

    March 17th, 2010at 8:50 pm(#)

    Relax, my friend. They don’t really start to hate you until they’re teenagers, right?

  2. karen says:

    March 18th, 2010at 1:23 am(#)

    G & K were always upset when Alec went on a trip, but they were also always glad to see him. A, however, is livid, and takes about two days to fully forgive his pops for the disappearing act. It started early, and seems to have intensified in age. I think he’s pissed to be left exclusively in the company of the womenfolk but I could be wrong.

  3. Vdad says:

    March 18th, 2010at 8:25 am(#)

    Alpha Baby is great! I got tired of my six month old daughter renaming my hard drive and changing my preferences while I tried to work. Now, she can go to town on the keys and she loves it.


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