Saturday, January 2, 2010

The New Year

For me, the New Year has always been a time to reflect back and look ahead. This year, as in the past three years since Natalie died, I am filled with contradictions. Highlights of 2009 include the completion of our new kitchen, Roslyn’s graduation from kindergarten and starting first grade at a new school, our trip to see dear friends in Michigan, and the conception of Baby Boy Adamo, who will be born sometime around April 27th.

We are thrilled beyond words that soon this new little person will be joining our family. I cannot help but feel that his existence is nothing short of a miracle. After countless failed attempts to get pregnant, I was almost ready to give up. And then in August, the pregnancy test was positive. Those first weeks and months were plagued with worry, a feeling of waiting for the other shoe to drop. Amazingly, it didn’t—and now we are more than half-way through (24 weeks), and this little boy is kicking up a storm.

Despite my burgeoning belly, I am still in a mild state of disbelief that this is really happening, that soon we will have a new baby to love. Roslyn is so excited to meet her brother. She dedicated a section of our Christmas tree to him, including special ornaments she made for him. She never forgets to include him as part of our family—just as she never forgets to include her precious sister, Natalie.

Roslyn is growing up to be a compassionate, caring girl. I can only imagine her confusion at times over what happened to her little sister. This past year, she has become much more conscious of the depth of the meaning of Natalie’s loss and is able to express herself in ways she couldn’t when she was younger. I am immensely proud of her.

The anticipated arrival of our son gives us hope for the joy he will bring to our family. But this hope is mixed with fear. In the coming months, we must undertake the task of putting away Natalie’s things to make room for the baby. Natalie’s room is going to change. It is an enormous burden, as I have tried so hard to cling to whatever remains of her—down to every detail. Yet, now I am finding that there are some things I need to let go of. It is time to “move on,” a term I have despised thus far because it seemed to mean leaving her behind, something I cannot ever do. But, time is helping me to understand that this is not true. She will never be left behind. She will never be forgotten by those she touched. She will live in our hearts forever. And soon, she will have a new brother who will grow to love her, too. Her clothes may not be in the drawers anymore, but this will not diminish in any way the love we feel for her or the place she holds—and will forever hold—in our family and in our hearts.

And so, we forge ahead, or as Christopher says, “we muddle through.” Here’s to the anticipation of starting another chapter in our lives. We remain forever grateful for the love and support from our family and friends. And we wish you all a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year.