Last night we received word that two of our best friends welcomed their first child into the world. A handsome little boy named Henry. We were overjoyed and extremely happy for our friends. Still are. That won’t change.
But then as my husband and I stood outside in the dark, cool night I couldn’t hold back the tears when I asked him if he, too, was just a little bit sad. Maybe sad wasn’t exactly the word I was looking for. Once again, I just wasn’t prepared for how bittersweet these feelings would taste. Because I am so happy, proud, excited, and so many other things for our friends, but I am also envious.
I found myself recalling an evening about 9 months ago when we went out for dinner with these friends. I was in the two week wait for my very first time, full of anticipation, nervousness, and so much hope. I was talking to my friend about this and about my concerns over whether or not to have wine with dinner. Turns out she was pregnant at that very moment and just didn’t know it yet. Now here we are, 9 months later, and she has a beautiful baby. One that was a welcome, yet unexpected surprise. And here I am. Watching it all from the outside and wondering why it isn’t happening for me too. Not that I am more deserving or worthy of such an experience, but that I am equally so.
These days are hard for me. I anticipate the next time we see them, the first time we meet them as Parents. I anticipate not being able to hold back my tears. Tears of both happiness for them and sadness for us. It’s a strange balancing act that I don’t know if I can execute with as much grace as I would hope. It’s a situation that can’t be avoided as I want to share my love for them and my love for Henry. One thing that I know I have working in my favor is that my husband, the only person in this whole wide world who comes closest to understanding my predicament because he shares in it, will be next to me the whole time. He’ll be there to wipe my tears as we drive home, alone, wondering when it will be our turn. And he’ll be there to remind me to focus on the sweetness of possibility because the bitterness is fleeting and futile.
Also…I going to be an Aunt. Again. My brother is welcoming his third daughter in the world sometime today. I suppose I should say that his girlfriend will be doing the majority of the welcoming, but I am getting another niece any way you look at it. Honestly, I am glad these births are all occuring on the same weekend. Its like pulling off one giant bandaid. I can’t hardly wait to meet Gabriella Saige because being an Aunt to those three sweet girls makes me happier than most other things.
Here’s to these wonderful new creatures and the people who created them.
And here’s to Tim and I, weathering this as best as we know how….hoping that we have a little something extra to be thankful for come Thanksgiving Day.