For a while now, I had planned on writing about what happened to me on March 17th, 2010 and how so much can change in just one year.
But I can't seem to find the words because my mind is consumed with the devastation in Japan - added to the crisis in North Africa, followed so soon after the earthquake in Christchurch. It all seems too much, doesn't it?
To make a very long story quite short, after Amelia was born last year, I got sick. And while my sweet healthy baby girl stayed home with Erik and my parents, on March 17th, I checked into the hospital for 30 hours which were, to date, the worst of my life. Turns out, I have healthy, happy babies, but my body doesn't take too well to pregnancy. Anyway, I am fine now. Better than fine. And whenever things get tough, I always say "at least it isn't March 17th". After something tough happens to you, it is nice to have that tucked away as a benchmark of sorts. Flying with a nine-week old baby and a toddler from DC to Vietnam? That's nothing compared to March 17th!! See how that works?
So I was going to write today on the one year anniversary all about my experience in the hospital and what I have learned, but instead I am just worried this week about my daughters. Not in a specific fashion, but in an all over, prepare them for the future sort of way. I realize that disaster, great or small, can happen anywhere, anytime to anyone. But it never makes it easier.
I was reminded of this last night while I watched the coverage of Japan on BBC. One of the grocery stores that is still well-stocked is opening for a short time each day and every family is allowed to purchase only 10 items every day. The reporter was interviewing one family and the mother was expressing her concern over providing for her two children with no resources, when her husband interrupted her and said, "at least we are still alive".
I thought, that's it. THAT is what I want my girls to know, to remember, to embrace. There will be disasters. There will be March 17ths. But there are also birthday cake, first days of school, and Christmas mornings. There is unconditional love. And there is gratitude.