It still surprises me that seven years ago, at this time, I was in actual labor with Catherine. I even gripped the bed rail and said, “I’m ready for the drugs.” I still remember calling my Mom and telling her it was going to be OK. How did I know it would be OK? Looking back, I had NO IDEA what we were getting ready to face. But somehow, deep inside me, I knew it would be OK.
Catherine is 7 years old today!
I think about all she’s taught me and brought to my life, and I’m so extraordinarily grateful at times I feel like I will bust. I had a reporter ask me not long ago what I would change about my life. Of course, I said, I would make it so Catherine didn’t have all the disabilities she has. But that wish is for her. For me, I wouldn’t want to change a thing. I would have missed out on all the amazing things I’ve learned about love, and God, and friends, and hope and courage, and strength. And yes, pain. But the painful parts quickly escape memory as I deliberately choose to focus on the gifts she has brought us. My desire not to change anything would actually be quite selfish. So, God, if you’re listening to this prayer, I pray you’ll heal Catherine completely – in the physical sense of the word. Amen.
So, Catherine, we will open your gifts today. I hope we’ll be able to blow smoke in your face and let you smell your Happy Birthday candles. Maybe we’ll get some ice-cream for you to play with and cake for you to squish in your hands. But despite all we try to give you, the reality is that you give me far more gifts than I could ever wrap up for you.
Happy Birthday Butterfly! Look at you fly.