(Mary, in the book of Luke 1:46)
It's Joy Sunday once again, and I remember it as the day when my sister Joy was baptised. She would have been 45.
Yes, she died as a baby, in my parents' arms at Georgetown Hospital. I never met her. Letting my parents hold her as she died was rather revolutionary for the time.
Over the years, our family has healed from this loss, and from the loss of Peter, who lived and died when I was in 2nd grade (about 3 years after Joy).
But now we have my sister E and my brother J, who were also born in the Christmas season. My brother arrived kicking and screaming in the 24 days leading up to Christmas (Advent) and my sister arrived in the 12 days of Christmas leading up to Epiphany. (We didn't meet her until March, so I can only assume she was also kicking and screaming--boy did that girl have lungs!!)
What joys they are to me, and now even to a second generation as I love spending time with my sister's children. I am a doting aunt.
When we heard that Peter had died, in true second grade fashion, I said, "oh, rats!" I have no memory of this--my memory of memorial services for both Joy and Peter are blotted from my memory and I rely on my parents memories.
A very special family photo session happened for the Christmas of 1982, when J was a wrinkled baby and B was still small but clearly older.
Do you have children in your life this Christmas? What traditions will you share with them? Yesterday we put up the Christmas tree with Poppy (one of her nicknames.) Decorating will happen on a different timetable, maybe next weekend?
I gave her her birthday gift, an "indestructables" story book in English and Spanish, and a sippy cup with a snowman from Target. I took lots of cute pictures that (pout) I can't share. (I totally understand my sister and brother-in-law's policy of not sharing pictures online but I'm a pretty good photographer!! And she's so cute!!)
What else? Oh, I went on a date yesterday, a photo walk in Riverbend Park. The guy I went with, G, had a blast, taking pictures. I took some nice ones, but felt like I was carrying the entire conversation. Afterwards, I came home and took not one but TWO naps. I have a date with a librarian tonight. I'm learning to not give out my phone number unless I feel a spark. I'm learning that it's okay to not have a good date.
We shared a meal merely because I was STARVED. But he was honored that I took him to the park, and pleased that we shared a meal. He pulled in for a hug as I dropped him at the Metro, and told me which app to download for editing my pictures and that please would I share my pictures with him. I went through my pictures last night and saw that I hated my landscapes, but liked my closeups. I have a certain eye. So the date wasn't a total bust. It got me into nature, I took a bunch of photos I like, and I got a lot of steps. I walked 2.8 miles yesterday!! (Over 7,000 steps!)
Today my church returns to in person. We did in person over the summer, but weren't prepared to go from outside to inside right away when the weather got cold. I'm in charge of recruiting greeters and we have some for the next two Sundays. (Well, today and next week.) I'm excited to be in our tiny space again, but will miss the hugs that we sneaked while outside. Damn this pandemic. We are learning so much.