Posted by: shelliejelly | November 8, 2008

Shine a light

Nana and SabineIt’s true that my life is upside down right now. I use this space to reflect, to get a better handle on what has happened and to work through the issues that I wake up to each morning and fall asleep to each night. But perhaps spending time mulling and mulling and mulling over these losses and what they mean to my life should be balanced with those people and things for which I am thankful. Because for all of the seeming misery, there are more than a few moments of happiness.

Sabine turned two this past September. We had a birthday party for her in a park down by the lake. The day couldn’t have been more perfect, and so we took some tables and chairs, a few games and some kites and set off for a picnic lunch with some friends and family. She ran around and around, flew a kite with my dad and mom, and seemed to have no idea that everyone was gathered to witness the passing of another year.

But they were, and we did.

Sabine has three people in her life that have known her since her very first breath outside my body. Me, O. and my mother. In the hospital room, as I lay in agony with excruciating back labor that gave me no rest between contractions, my mother’s face became a focal point. I’ve never seen her, or another woman, look so happy. Words can’t even touch the feelings written on her face, as though she were not quite in this world as she watched her granddaughter slip from my womb.

Some people can’t imagine having their mother in the delivery room, but for me, having her there was a huge source of comfort. She’s always offered me constant encouragement, has been a solid supporter of mine, never wavering in her belief. To have someone who so clearly loves me in the same room where I meet my daughter for the first time seemed natural. It’s a decision I will never regret.

So now, two years later, as I watched my mom and my daughter look out over Lake Michigan, I marvel at how Sabine will always have this person who has known her, quite literally, her entire life. And I know she’ll spend some days and years without her Nana, but I also know when that time comes her Nana, no matter where she is, will watch her carefully, love her without pause.

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