Happy belated 4th of July!! I, like everyone else, can't believe we are in July. We celebrated with lots of friends and neighborhood festivities, the biggest of which happened on the evening of the 4th. We were wishy-washy about going because 1) our babysitters have abandoned us for the summer, 2) it was hot as heck and Lilah is a delicate flower, and 3) my sister-in-law is about to have a baby yesterday. All of these things meant we were not quite sure how it would go (i.e., is it worth the trouble), considering L might pass out and the likelihood of Garrett screaming "my feet are fweaty" and refusing to participate were high.
It took us four times longer than it should have to get out the door, and I was flustered and hot before we even got there. Combine sweat running down my back, not enough sets of hands for cameras, drinks, shoes, and bikes (which G decided would be better if I carried) and I was having a bad attitude before the big children's parade even started. Lilah and Garrett were both looking like little tomatoes, about to burst in the sun.
But then, they got started and I was running ahead, trying to capture the moment (you know it's all about the pictures:), and I look over and saw my little girl....you know, the 'holes in her heart', 'crooked spine', 'feeding tube', 'severely delayed' child?--and she was livin it up! This is when it would have come in handy to turn on the video camera that I insisted we get before our first was born.... there are no words to describe the joy that girl was feeling. Clearly no one has told her that she's sick or different or that all of those people, balloons, and confetti weren't just for her, because, Oh The Joy!! Lilah was quivering with excitement. Squealing. Clapping her hands in this super-fast way she does when 'it's the best'. Throwing her arms up in the air.
And I had a moment. I thought about how we almost didn't bring her, but she was the one, of all the children, who loved it the most. I thought about how pure, and sweet her spirit is, to be moved so greatly by such simplicity. I thought about how, even though she's more work, she's more joy. About what a blessing she is for others. About how every gathering of friends and family feels like a celebration to me. A celebration of her life...a life that is rich and full in a unique way...a life that enriches others.
I'm telling ya'll...it was a moment. My lip started quivering and the tears were just welling up. I was just a moment away from a full-out, pig-snort cry, when Garrett mowed me down with his bike. And the desire to keep the blood that was squirting from my heel off the parade path brought me back to reality. A reality that included cold bbq, warm potato salad, stinky horses, and enough snow cones to sink a ship.:)