Thursday, September 9, 2010

Same-same, but different

A girlfriend of mine traveled through Thailand a few years ago, and in her attempt to be as open-minded as possible, tried many of their culinary delights. In one restaurant she was a little trepidatious about what had been set in front of her (and the language barriers made her a little uncertain as to just what she was ordering most times). She asked the waitress, "Is this chicken?" The waitress responded, "Oh yes, chicken. Same-same,, but different." Apparently it was not so much on the "same-same", and a whole lot on the "different". (Don't ask me what it was, I don't think she ever really found out)

When she told a group of us the story, we all howled with laughter, and now "same-same, but different" is part of our everyday vernacular.

Raising a second daughter just two and a half years after my first, I get a lot of "same-same, but different" moments.
  • Walking slowly, quietly up the stairs, with a swaddled bundle in my arms. Her body limp from a voracious feed, eyes fluttering with REM and her little mouth gaping open, breathing her little milk breath onto my arm.
  • The little grunts and sighs and whimpers only the smallest ones make while they sleep fitfully in your arms. Knowing she is close to awakening, I don't bother trying to attempt the crib. Instead, enjoy the feeling, the smell, the warmth of her body snuggled against my chest.
  • The cries - rising in a crescendo - so quickly they get annoyed, frustrated, angry at being left that one minute too long in the bouncy chair, on the playmat, in their crib. Oh the temper in one so tiny.
  • Clenched fists. Enthusiastic little fist pumps. Jerky arm motions that get more and more determined to capture attention.
  • The cross-eyed look of intent concentration while fist is brought to mouth and fingers are chewed on, drooled on.
  • The look of pure joy. Unadulterated, innocent, pure bliss in a baby smile. They smile with their eyes first, and then slowly it spreads down to their cheeks, into a gummy little grin. Is there anything more innocent and pure than a baby's wide grin?
Isn't it incredible how similar babies are? And at the same time totally different? It's like deja vu, but with something a little changed.

Same-same, but different.


No comments: