I have always been fortunate enough to have good friends. A good friendship takes a lot of work but if done right, it does not feel like work at all.
When Allie died, I was 3 weeks from my due date. When Gary made the calls that I was in the hospital, many people jumped to the conclusion that she was born early. Not that I was about to be induced and that she was to be born still. The outpouring of love and affection and support that we received was unlike anything I had ever experienced. And far more than I ever expected. Call after call, Gary told our friends and family to stay home and call after call was met with,"What hospital?" and "We are on our way".
I never left the room and I allowed very few people up to see me. Gary was my strength and my rock and he would go report in to everyone with the latest information and come back to tell me that our friends and family had pretty much taken over the whole waiting room of the hospital. I was not at all surprised.
Many people did not know what to say. So they just sat there in case we needed them. They told stories and supported each other and I think created some bonds that are stronger now having lived through such a horror together.
That's what friends do. That's what friends are for.
When Miranda was born, we could not have people come to the hospital because that time was really M's. It was her time to say hello and goodbye to the child she carried and delivered and as hard as it was for us, it was just not about us. Having so many awful memories of the maternity ward and Labor & Delivery in general, I was ok with it just being Gary and me. I also knew that once the baby was discharged to our care, we would have her forever so it was ok to share her with M those first 2 days. Hard as hell, but ok.
We stayed in a hotel in Delaware until we could come home. It was the middle of the week. We were a good hour away. And yet they came. They came to finally celebrate with us. We had friends come for lunch and friends come for dinner and friends come to drop by just for a little bit to say hello and meet our daughter. The hotel room was packed with diapers and toys and blankets and clothes and all sorts of things that we brought as we had no idea what we needed! And in the empty spaces were our friends. They are always with us, no matter what.
This past Saturday was Miranda's 1st birthday party. Originally family only, until I realized how many people I hurt by not including them. They wanted to celebrate our joy...our rainbow. They wanted to search for the perfect gift for her and get together and watch her eat her first bit of cake. I realized that it was unfair to deny them that and unfair to deny us that! So we opened up the house and they descended. And it was wonderful. There was so much laughter and love and light and it was everything I could have hoped for and then some.