I trip up again, forgetting to add the E in the middle. I’ve never included my middle name in my signature but the notary says I have to. “You must sign your name exactly as it appears on the Title” she explains.
“Exactly like every letter or exactly like the first letters and lines that he uses?” I nod to Mi.Vida’s signature which is just his initials with straight lines scrawled between them.
“Just make sure you can make out the first letter of each name. I practice scrawling this new signature a couple of times before she puts the official papers in front of me. We go through each page and I scribble the big looping letters and half-assed lines, ending with a flourishing swoop that completes my last initial and my first in one sweeping movement. That flourish is the only remnant of my real signature.
I scrawl my name over and over. Thank you, thank you, thank you, I whisper with each curling swoop. Thank you for this, our new home.
* * * * *
Isa is finally asleep and I try to figure out how I might tackle the mess that has taken over the apartment. There is so much shit on the floor you can barely walk. Something needs to be done.
I grab Isa’s book basket and start collecting her things. Every room is littered with her stuff and I spend an couple of minutes grabbing this and that from each space. With everything I rescue from the dirty floor I whisper thank you.
Little pink sock with the floppy eared dog on it – thank you.
Purple shoe that never really fit right – thank you.
Big Bird and Elmo and Abby and Snuffagus – thank you.
The big board book edition of Corderoy with a birthday message from her grandparents – thank you
Frog and lady bug and elephant and crocodile and all the myriad squirt toys strewn around the house – thank you, thank you, thank you.
Blankie and other one Blankie – thank you
Thank you. For her. For my life with her. For the way she scrunches her nose when she asks, “What’s llama doing?” Thank you for her smooches and her hugs and her nuzzling noses (like Corderoy and Lisa). Thank you for her dimples and her belly button and the blonde whisps that curl around her face. Thank you for the “Hi Mommy”s and the “I wove woos.” Thank you for making me a mother.
And thank you for sometimes making dreams come true.