“What time is it?” “Has it been three hours already?” “What have I done today?” “Did I even shower?” “Aww, was that a smile?” These are just a few of the questions that both my daughter and I asked the last month or so in 2020.
Aevrie Rhose, my first grandchild, came into the world on her due date with 10 toes, 10 fingers, and a cute button nose. Unlike what, Candace‘s, (Aevirie’s mom) first OB-GYN predicted; Aevrie was healthy and delivered full-term with few complications. Considered a double rainbow baby, Miss Aevrie has shown a remarkable ability to take up space even while in the womb. Along with an 18 cm uterine fibroid, Aevrie formed… stretched… kicked… and developed her way into a world dealing with infection and tumult.
I’m not sure if Candace realizes this, but her pregnancy was a revolutionary act. Aevrie’s birth and life is a revolutionary act! During a year when there was so much focus on separation, division and isolation… Aevrie’s smile is a reminder that we are NOT in control. She is reason to love and live when life’s “stuff” seems to beg us to throw up our hands in defeat.
I must admit, there were times when I considered the circumstances surrounding Aevrie’s little life, that I’d wonder, “Why?” and “Why this way?” But with a shrug I would quickly dismiss the questions and settle on the answer, “It just is.”
We don’t always get to control how our life pans out. Actually, there is little of which we do have control. If you think about it, what we think we are controlling is simply our doing our best to manage what graces the paths of our life. Our lives are nothing more than a series of decisions that are based on our interpretation of the different situations in which we find ourselves.
In addition to Aevrie making her debut in the throes of a pandemic; Candace was unemployed for seven months of her pregnancy, I was fired from one job and hours reduced on another. In addition to focusing on survival, there were doctor appointments and preexisting health conditions to monitor and overcome. And somehow, there was laughter and road trips and rents being paid and meals (good meals) being eaten.
There is a community of men and women who continue to rally around Candace to make sure Aevrie’s needs are met. In fact, this week, at just shy of three months, we purchased diapers for the first time. Truth is, there are more gifted diapers stored away that can’t be used only because they are too large.
Much of 2020 has made its way into 2021. We continue to hear about a deadly virus that mutates and refuses to slow down. We continue to hear about the sins of racists and narcissists. We continue to mourn the loss of the unarmed and unprotected. Unemployment continues to plague our neighborhoods. The homeless increases and evictions loom… still.
Still… there are Aevrie Rhose moments! Moments that are so big they cause us to honestly consider how little worry and fret changes. Moments that are huge and beg us to continue to stack the small wins as monuments of gratitude and thanksgiving.
There is so much on my “To Do” list I thought would be done by now yet, being present for those who matter seems the new and welcomed normal. I’m still amazed at how quickly three hours passes. I will take it all in with relaxed shoulders and eyes that smile above a required face mask. If 2020 taught me anything, it’s that what I once deemed urgent isn’t even important.