Bloom-ing

We are in the midst of many blooms here.
There is the literal kind, with the arrival of a long-awaited, therapeutic, she-gets-me novel that has wrapped itself around my every thought and emotion and has given me the much-needed reassurance of strength that I will need in these next few weeks.

Healing is a bit like watching a flower bloom. You don’t really know when it’s going to happen, and despite the fact that you might be sitting there in front of barren ground attempting to will a bare stem to blossom, it doesn’t happen on command. No, it is gradual. Like time-lapse photography. And as you are sitting, waiting, pleading for growth, you eventually begin to forget that you are waiting until suddenly, days later, you look and behold… a bloom.

Mom Blogger and Internet Friend Kelle’s poignant capture of those first few days in her Florida hospital just seven months before our Z-Man was born hit a deep part of my heart that I had pretty much boarded up, one piece of scrap wood at a time, these past 20 or so months. Ripping those pieces of wood off this week is much more healing than I could have imagined, even if it was a bit painful at times. I have to admit that after Chapter One, I laid the book down and spent an hour cleaning all of the windows in our house, trying to wipe away those private images she seemed to have stolen from our own journey.

My friend Nicole is reading Bloom as well, and I love that. I love that I have friends who have pre-ordered a novel so closely related to our own journey just because they get it.
Or my friend Krystal, who didn’t have to say anything other than to call her when I had my meltdown next month, because it would come. Because she gets the significance of missing my mom and starting a mother-daughter relationship right around Mother’s Day. Because she understands the journey we could be thrown any day now.

Friendships bloom, too, and usually when you’re not looking.

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My trusty Word Search book became the most recent tablet for hit-you-hard random thoughts the other day when I was getting some prenatal testing for blood sugar and anemia done at the hospital where Zack was born and where Little Miss Jellybean will be joining our world next month. I can’t stop the notes, the inspiration some days. I use the backs of business cards if I have an idea at work; scrawl on grease-stained napkins with a pencil or a tube of lip gloss to keep a word nearby. I’ve used (clean) diapers and the palm of my hand. But there I was, looking for a word to circle and minding my business in that waiting room the other day when I had.to.write.it.down.

I still hate hospitals. Probably always will. Maybe more so the older I get.

From my seat in the waiting room, I could crane my neck just slightly forward and to the left and see the windows of a hospital room where I processed my new life and journey during five days in this building two Augusts ago. I couldn’t stop staring. I was half-expecting to see a tired young woman cradling a newborn son staring back at me, eyes puffy from tears, new wrinkles and gray hairs and unbelievable exhaustion across her faded smile.

Soon enough, I’ll be down the hall again welcoming another child, another journey. I hope it’s another room. I panic when I think about that room and its layout, the secret moments its walls hold of the days when I thought everything was crumbling down to the ground.

Still, there is a serene happiness at the forefront of my life these days. My world is a collection of images, frozen in time, haphazardly thrown together like a piece of abstract art. The sun of a premature spring warms my hair. The baby calf spotted on a walk down the road with my two guys. That beautiful sound of a growing baby’s heartbeat in a doctor’s room. The voices of loved ones ore the phone; calls that touch me so much and refresh my heart and mind. My son bringing a toy or book over to me. His strengthening legs and feet who are taking more daring, larger steps. My daughter’s pokes and kicks, reminding me of her presence, her love, my love. The best days, those simple moments we’ve been sharing as husband and wife, as friends. The feel of my camera in my hands. The view of the world from its trusty lens.

I love the woman I’ve become, the blessings I’ve been given, the tests that have challenged me, the difference I know I can make through education and advocacy and love and new beginnings. The magic I can create. The bloom I can become.

It’s feeling the spring breeze when Zack and I scurry across a blanket sprawled across the grass but never forgetting where we came from, sad hospital view and all. It’s amazing how much I feel it all.

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I am taking in every moment with my son, his last few weeks with a family of three. I am mesmerized by the changes overtaking him every day, the improvements he’s making overnight.

I’m just taking it all in.

And now it’s a beautiful Easter Sunday.

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I’ve got the day off and our family is busy enjoying the beauty of the littlest moment. My littlest man is taking a nap. My handsome hubby is beefing up his Tiger Woods Golf character. And that breeze is beckoning to me from the open front door just a few feet away. We will pack ourselves up soon and make the most of this day we’ve been given. There will be talks and walks and grass under our feet and just me, my camera and my guys. And the big round belly to remind me of the joy and journey yet to come.

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We will run away and enjoy it and make the most of it all. Because there are more blooms to be discovered and more blooming to be done.

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