Thank you for all the birthday wishes! For both Sophia and itty bitty Will. For over a year now I have been trying to verbalize a very profound feeling. I just could not seem to get my head around the words. Wouldn’t you know – during the first few days of Motherhood, Juli did it for me.
Awhile back I asked Kellee to send Juli the XS sized diaper covers that I had lent her. Just as Johanna had lent some to me back when Sophia was a wee. Kellee not only sent the diaper covers but she sent a HUGE box of cloth diapers that B had outgrown and a bunch of cloths and other sundrees. HUGE. Just like Melanie sent me boxes and boxes of stuff Scarlett and Blu had grown out of. Now, Kellee hasn’t ever met Juli, it was an act of kindness and caring for another human being.
Juli’s first chance to look more carefully at the box only came this last week about 4 days into motherhood. Those of you that have been there know what that day is like. You’re exhausted, overwhelmed, you are grappling with your expectations and reality, you wonder how you can walk one more step. Throw a few hormones in there and it’s a perfect storm of clarity. Clarity? Yes. I believe for some reason stripping ourselves down to these basic elements of survival results in jewels of insight and clarity. The essential human feelings and needs come to the surface and, if you’re lucky, you have an opportunity to feel them more profoundly and vocalize them more perfectly than any other time in your life.
Back to Juli. They have had a VERY hard week. The baby boy is fine, doing great really. But Juli’s labor was difficult, she lost a lot of blood, she is weak. They are out of cloth diapers, and cloths, and just out of patience and energy. She and Chad (her husband) turn to the box. They look more closely. They both start to cry. Kellee had filled the box with cloth diapers that little B had outgrown, cloths, shoes, a baby carrier and various other items that you do not ever feel as though your going to need until the moment strikes and you find them as essential as a glass of water. Juli and Chad were overwhelmed with the love and caring sent through that box at that moment. Juli called me a few minutes later and told me about their experience. How perfectly timed the box was and what it did for them.
She said, “It wasn’t how large it was, it wasn’t what was specifically in it, it was just that someone cared enough to put it together and it was there right at the moment we needed it.” A turning point.
That was it. That was the thought and feeling I had been struggling with for over a year.
You see, I have been the recipient of unbelievable kindness this past year. I speak specifically of blog kindness. I have received, emails, comments. I have received cards in the mail. I have received stunning handmade gifts for baby – bibs, booties, sweaters, blankets. I have received hand-me-downs, new beautiful cloths for her to wear. I have received thoughts, prayers and actions. All of these gestures were received by me and my family with the profound feeling of gratitude. I struggled with a way to show that gratitude. Do I publicly feature all of the gifts, stories, and love? Do I keep it private with a simple thank-you card? How do I reciprocate? How do I show how deeply each of these gestures – small and large – tangible and intangible meant to me and my family?
I just couldn’t find a way to do it that made me feel right. Publicly featuring them somehow did not work for me. I didn’t want to seem as though I was spoiled or entitled. I didn’t want to forget someone or something. I was unsure how to convey the meaning that a gift or a gesture brought. How they meant the same thing to me – they were both important. But yet, I felt like I should find a way to verbalize it – thank you all verbally and publicly.
Until Juli did it for me ( for the record – she is often doing this type of thinking for me, we have been friends for 18 years.)
“It wasn’t how large it was, it wasn’t what was specifically in it, it was just that someone cared enough to put it together and it was there right at the moment we needed it.”
Thank you – each of you – for putting together something for me and my family. Right when we needed it. I have received it all, even the prayers and thoughts. I reach for each item often – whether it be a tangible object or a comment that comes to surface in my head.
I cherish it all.
I truly appreciate it.