In all of Sophie's memory, we (her dad A and I) have not lived together. She's four now, and her memory extends back about a year or so now, which, to a child nearly but not yet five, is a long time. But, try as she may, she cannot remember everyone living together under one roof.
She went away on vacation with A for an interminably long time, and she was not privy to the fact that when she returned back home to LA with him, he would be coming to live in our house with us. We expect that it will take several months to realize that he isn't going back to the "atarpment" as she calls it, that we're really, officially a family.
The thing that I have noticed is how incredibly good A has gotten with her in the last several weeks. He's always been a good father, the best I could imagine (except for me, of course!) but he wasn't really a parent in the feeding-dressing-bed-bath type of way. In that way, he fell flat. After eight weeks without me, entirely without me, in a different state from me, he learned. Fast. Efficiently. I watched him shower her today, wash her hair, smother her with lotion and spritz her with her favorite body spray, dress her easily, and send her off to play. It was a moment where my heart swelled with love. I am fiercely in love with both of them--in different ways, of course--and it makes my heart skip and swell and flutter to know that they are mine, mine, mine, all mine, forever mine, and that they are so close. I can have the baby (which is good, because A doesn't know how to pick a cloth diaper and Babylegs to match if his life depended on it and I was holding him at gunpoint), but Sophie is firmly A's girl, and it thrills me to see them so close. For so long I was afraid that they were never going to have a relationship, but I am so happy they do.