Five years later …
“Elijah McCarty Cullen, you get your butt down here,” I snarled, chuckling as I listened to the present my son left for me on my computer. I heard the pummeling steps of my five-year-old son as he ran to the basement of our home. He giggled, looking up at me with his jade-green eyes and crooked smile. “I go to listen to what I worked on last night with Uncle Emmett and Uncle Jas and this is what I hear.” I pressed a button and some simple drum beats fill the room, along with a basic bass line. It was simple, but for a five-year-old to create it? On his own. Color me impressed, but still irked that he was fussing with the equipment in our recording studio.
Eli loves Mommy!
Eli loves Daddy!
Eli loves Aria!
Eli DOESN’T Love Kellee OR Jasen … they smell.
“It’s my new song, Daddy. I loves you,” he said, crawling into my lap. “I loves Mommy.”
“But, you don’t love your new baby brother or sister?” I snickered. He wrinkled his nose, shaking his head. Elijah was Bella made over, in male form, even down to her snark and perfect pitch. However, he had my coloring, but with darker brown hair. “Elijah, regardless, Mommy and Daddy love you very much. That will never change.”
“But, everyone is going blah over Kellee and Jasen,” Elijah said, rolling his eyes. He snuggled against me, toying with the tattoo I had on my arm, an almost full sleeve, representing my family and our binding connection of music, love and family. “They’re babies. All they do is sleep, eat from mommy’s boob and poop.”
“I hate to break it to you, Nugget, you did the same thing when you were a baby,” I laughed, kissing his forehead.
“Nuh uh,” he argued, looking at me and arching a brow. “Don’t call me Nugget.”
“Uh huh and you’ll always be my Nugget,” I teased back, tickling his sides. He laughed, squirming on my knee. “Kellee and Jasen need extra care because they came early, unlike you. You were overcooked.”
“Mommy wanted to make sure that I was baked all the way through,” Elijah said, holding his arms wide. But, he sighed. “I do think they’re cute. When they’re not crying …”
“I agree with you there,” I said. Kellee and Jasen were colicky babies and persnickety about who would feed them. Only Bella could do it. They preferred the breast, but with twins, we had to supplement with formula. I tried to feed them, but they usually screamed. So, I focused my attention on Elijah and did what I could with the twins, which was baths and diaper changes. We were both exhausted, but were making it work with the help of our family and soon, a nanny. “Now, where did my latest track go, computer genius. I need that for Mommy and Uncle Kellan.”
Elijah closed out his recording and pulled up the latest song that we’d recorded for our fourth studio album, Speranze e Sogni, or Hopes and Dreams. We had almost finished it when Bella went into preterm labor in early October with our twins, Kellee and Jasen. We just needed two more songs, which I was working on with the guys, recording when my family was sleeping.
Thank goodness, our studio in the basement was sound-proof.
Elijah McCarty Cullen