I looked up my family tree and found out I was the sap. -Rodney Dangerfield
Apparently it’s the season of thankfulness, especially when it comes to family. Just last week dearest Auntie Pat provided a much needed escape to paradise, today Mom found us a glider and matching ottoman while she was out shopping, and yesterday I was shocked to find a beautifully handcrafted dry sink (pictured below) from Kenton that took 55 hours to make! The list goes on and on. It seems trite to mention it, but we are so fortunate to have such devoted and attentive family members. I can’t imagine bringing a child into the world without the help of these two ever extending family units to look after us, feed us, encourage us, and tell us when we’re royally screwing up.
I’ve long believed that loneliness is the most devastating human emotion. I fear its power. It crosses all demographics; every race, class, age, tribe, every being longs for a connection with someone else. And it starts at birth. A hundred years ago, about 99% of babies in orphanages in the United States died before they were seven months old. Unwanted babies were taken to these institutions where modern antiseptic procedures and adequate food seemed to guarantee them at least a fighting chance for a healthy life. But the babies died, not from infectious diseases or malnutrition, but from a completely different kind of deprivation: lack of human contact. Once they caught on to what was ailing these poor children, they began a rotating schedule of staff to hold and cuddle the babies in 45 minute increments every 3 hours. Results improved by 99%.
I think of this story when I look at those who are isolated from family and friends and I can see desperation’s physical toll. It only makes me cling harder to what I have because I know I can never be grateful enough.
As I move into my 19th week of pregnancy, I’m looking forward to a few things in the coming months: finding out the sex of the baby, hosting my sister for a weekend while trying not to reveal before mentioned sex of baby, playing with my perfect niece and nephew, spending a few weekends away with groups of friends and family, an anniversary in NYC, and of course—Spring (which is apparently coming very late this year).
Things I’m not looking forward to in the coming months include a long winter, more blasted snow, the ever increasing need to empty my bladder (I might just move into the bathroom), and saying goodbye to one of my closest friends who is taking off for an adventure in Alaska (I will miss her dearly).
Until next time.