Home Via Private Plane: another love letter

My wonderful Cameron,

You had quite a day today. Bright and early you were awake, and I’ll admit it, I handed you over to Granna and Grandpa Bill so I could go back to sleep. But you didn’t seem to mind, and you had a great time playing with them.  Later, the four of us headed down to the docks, this time you had a PFD borrowed from the Coast Guard just in case. There were kazillions of small jellyfish pulsing their way through the waters of the harbour, and schools of minnows darting amongst them. Then off you went to show Granna how well you can climb the ‘climbing wall’ up to the slide at the playground.

The visit ended a bit early in the day, as we were booked on a very special flight home. This visit you paid a little more attention to Nana, even giving her hugs and kisses when prompted to at bedtimes. At first, our goodbyes were much the same. But then, as we gathered up the luggage to head off, you looked a little thoughtful. “Do you want to go and say bye to Nana one more time,” was answered immediately with a nod. You trotted back to her chair, and volunteered several hugs and kisses, and an “I love you,” too.

Then we were off. Not to the airport, not this time! Grandpa Bill had noticed on a walk with Mandy that there was an airline flying harbour-to-harbour between Comox and Vancouver. Float planes! Yes, this was very exciting. We see float planes headed for Coal Harbour just about daily from our back yard, and you’ve seen them landing on and taking off from the water. So we walked back down to the harbour.

As we neared the check-in location, you slowed and got fussy. You didn’t want to hold my hand, and no way could I hold onto the loop on your backpack. Granna mouthed the word, “nervous,” at me, and I agreed. But Granna held your hand as we walked to the plane, a long, long walk along the docks. We saw a seal on the way! I wish I’d been close enough to the two of you to see your eyes as you first saw the plane we were to be on. It was a Beaver – essentially a minivan with wings and a single propeller. We posed for photos, then the pilot lifted you up and into your seat. I got in beside you, the door was closed, and we waved our bye-byes to Granna and Grandpa Bill on the dock. It was just us on board, too!
THEN. They started to push the airplane back. Your eyes got wide, but not with excitement. Oh, you were nervous! We were moving, this was all new, and where the heck was the pilot? You didn’t really relax once he hopped in, because then the prop started up and we were really moving out into the harbour. I warned you that it was about to get really noisy, just a moment before it did. Really, I couldn’t hear you crying, nor could I make out what you were trying to say, because it was that loud. You really wanted my arms around you, tight, though. I didn’t need to hear you to know that – you grabbed my hand and pulled hard. The splashing beneath us seemed to distress you as much as the noise did. But then we were up, up, up.

Slowly, gradually, you relaxed. A cookie helped. It didn’t take long before you were plastered up against the large concave window, peering down, chattering despite being drowned out by the engine. You saw a cruise ship, islands, small private harbours, mountains, trees, rocks. Then you laid down, grabbed my hand, and placed it over your face  – palm over your eyes, fingers curled under your chin, so your lips could just touch my skin. That’s how you comfort yourself, now, though usually it’s my shoulder or neck that you choose. In a short time, you were asleep, and out for the rest of the trip.

You missed seeing the BC Ferries, Stanley Park, the Lion’s Gate Bridge, the city, the seabus as we turned for our final approach to the harbour. That’s okay. We’ll do it again.

And so this evening you were exhausted very early, and soon were over tired. Oh, you missed Granna and Grandpa Bill, and insisted after I’d read around ten stories that you HAD to see them on Skype. They needed some time to set things up – and so it was late by the time you were in bed. You had a tough time falling asleep, and I didn’t react well because I knew the problem was that you just needed to fall asleep. But you were soon back in my arms, snuggled in the Comfy Chair.

You fell asleep listening to the rain, to my heartbeat, to me telling you how much you are loved by everyone in your life. Then we just sat there, snuggled, while you slept.

Quite a day.

I love you.

Mommy

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