“Auntie, your baby is a twinkle in the sky.” had said my beautiful, little freckly niece soon after my summer wedding.
I will never forget those words. The winter that followed was tough. It was freezing, the country covered in snow.
I sat at my office desk, consumed in my own darkness of winter blues and post wedding blues, but mainly coming to terms with my doctor’s news that having children of my own would not be a good idea. I had no idea a twinkle in the sky was about to enter this world, my son, and in the hospital just around the corner from my work.
There are no words to truly describe those days of introductions. Those moments that are like gold dust to me now.
The moment when I first saw this smiley, beautiful, brown eyed boy. When I stroked his soft black hair. How he didn’t mind getting in the car with two complete strangers to go to the park for hours at a time as we all got to know one another. How it felt to hold his small, warm hand in mine and the moment when he held out his other one to my husband and we walked those first steps together, hand in hand, as a family. Or how his cheekiness started to emerge when he bent down and tickled my feet, saying “ickle, ickle!”.
But there is one moment I will never forget. We were coming to the end of our bedtime routine.Having finished our story, usually Perter Rabbit, my son in my arms, him gulping back the last of his bottle while holding his essential fleece blanket. As I starred into his chocolate eyes I began to run my fingers along his brows, gently over his eyelid, his little nose, stroking his soft chubby cheeks. His eyes didn’t leave mine.
Then he lifted his own hand and ran his small fingers along my brows, touching my eyelids, nose and face.
The tear drops which trickled down were filled with boundless love for this child, for my son, and they were also tears of my grief and darkness leaving me.
My niece was right! My baby was a twinkle in the sky, the brightest and twinkliest one; and with the hands of many, it landed in our laps, into our hearts and is our world.
Merry Christmas everyone!