it's monday (er...tuesday), and everyone is recovering from the weekend festivities. whether or not you have dayenu stuck in your head or a tummy ache from easter candy, this weekend was the universal celebration of spring. a new leaf. a fresh start. coming through our narrow places out into the light. like everything, cyclical. unfortunately, the bud must burst through it's tight wrapping. the child is thrust into the bright, loud world from the comfort of the womb. the snake takes it's time as it wriggles free from it's past life, leaving it's skin behind. every transition, every fresh start, every new phase of life comes with discomfort, struggle, and sometimes pain. friday, as i was prepping to get ready for our seder dinner with friends that night, i was at lunch with my mom. i got a text from one of my best friend's. not best friend in that we hang out all the time kind of way. best friend in that we don't see each other for 6 months and talk each other's ears off for lunch. best friend in that hey, want me to help you deliver your child, kind of way. a text from her, she's been diagnosed with breast cancer.
i hardly had time to really read it. or really even understand or grasp what it said. my mom asked what i was looking at, and as usual was annoyed that i was instagramming lunch or texting someone. so i tucked the phone away. the rest of the day carried on and i didn't really let myself go back to that nugget of information. sitting, burning a hole through my phone. we got through a beautiful seder dinner, headed home and put the kids to bed. i lounged around friday night like nothing happened. and then saturday, i woke up.
saturday basically didn't happen. i mean, i'm pretty sure i woke up, i sat somewhere for a long time, then moved and sat somewhere else. just in the act of waking up i had realized what i had been told. the truth of it. will it be fatal? we hope not. but will she feel fear? sickness? pain? worry? exhaustion? yes. and suddenly i am thrust back to the moment of my mother's diagnosis. i am reliving it all again and i am now laced with guilt, for the things i did not do, the flowers i didn't buy enough of, the treatment sessions i didn't go to, the nights i could have gone over, just to spend time with her. i woke up saturday morning thinking about seder the previous night. thinking about watching my friend's daughter cry, and not wanting to look at her. not wanting her to make eye contact with me because what i wanted to do was scream out "I WAS THERE! I WAS SCARED TOO! The crying becomes less intense and the fear becomes more a constant, dull ache" but i didn't. i sat there. and just...buried myself in the chaos my toddler was creating. i am beyond blessed that my mother is in remission, i am thankful for that every day. for the chance to make more of the time. but as my friend begins her own journey with this disgusting disease, i am desperate to find ways to not feel so helpless. i know, selfish.
after a week of a cold, this news, and my inability to function at all on saturday, i figured i was out for Easter Sunday activities. i had planned to send the man and kiddos on without me. isn't it funny what little, sweet morsels of life happen to fall into our laps sometimes? at the most painfully perfect moments. my brother in law and sister in law just had twins. they were born two weeks ago (holy crap, it's been two weeks already?!) and only a few days had passed since my nephew James was released from the NICU (he's fine, his lungs just needed some time) but we hadn't met them yet. somehow, the thought of dragging my two guys into a hospital, etc. seemed unpleasant to say the least. at the last minute, they decided to head over to my in laws for Easter for dinner. it was just what i needed to get myself moving.
i walked in, said hi to whoever was directly in front of me, put down my camera bag near the babies and got my hand sanitization on. i sat in that room for maybe 1.5 hours. for however long they were there. it is amazing to me to be an aunt to this many kids, let me just say. i have 15 nieces and nephews, 13 of which i see fairly regularly. it's so interesting to see the ways they are alike, like my husband and his siblings, like my parents in law. and all the ways they are so very different, from looks to likes. they are all such great kids though and really and truly adore each other. cousin time is coveted and you can always trust them to be looking out for each other. mostly. though i wonder what 5 nephews born in the span of, what, 4 years, is going to look like in high school...
the bottom line is these little people give me so much. and being with my newest niece and nephew was just what i (selfishly) needed. i sat there and soaked up the miracle that they are, all the while hoping that my friend gets her miracle too.