Dear Erika and Bridget –
Most people, in celebration of their children’s birth, usually post a photo or two of their kids and say something about how wonderful that day was. They reminisce about how wonderful all the hospital staff was. How none of the pains were really that bad. They think about how loving their partner was and how it felt when that tiny baby was placed in their arms. But quite frankly, I figured today was better spent saying thank you because without you, I probably wouldn’t have a birthday to celebrate. Might seem a tad hyperbolic, but it’s true. I’m pretty sure that when Mom and Dad told you that you were going to be coming to Oxford for a week at a stretch so that you could tend to your bedridden and vastly pregnant older sister you didn’t jump for joy and try for a few back springs. Nope. I’m fairly certain there were some choice muttering (privately, of course, because Mom and Dad told you that you were doing it) and some, “Why the hell is it my responsibility?” kind of talk. But then you came to help out and watched way too much MacGyver and cooked your fair share of mac ‘n cheese all the while living in a college apartment with me, Dave, and our roommate. But without your help, I know I would have gone into early labor, and with twins that usually doesn’t end well.
So, thank you for that. But more importantly, thank you for always being the kind of women that my girls can look up to. Thank you for:
- letting them see that real women can hold their own in an argument;
- giving them stories that they can tell their children;
- playing with them when they were little and drinking with them when they were not;
- taking them places when you didn’t have to;
- shopping on endless trips to the mall when they visited;
- seeing movies you probably didn’t want to;
- reminding them that women can fart and belch;
- having husbands who would willingly run out for chocolate milk or make room on the bedroom floor when the heat and humidity got too high;
- being what a mother should be; and
- showing them the power of sisters.
It’s been a long 22 years, so that’s pretty much a given that I’ve probably forgotten something. And I’m sure that as the years go on, they’ll add to that list on their own.