The month of December has always been a hard one for me. Anything tragic or sad or scary that happens in my life usually happens this month. Now I have another unhappy event to add to our December calendar--the passing of Gregg's mom.
We were putting up the Christmas tree when we got the call that she was dying. If it wasn't already up we wouldn't have bothered this year, but since it is I'm glad to have it. The warm glow of it is cheerful in the house.
Yesterday my friend Marla came over and spent the afternoon with me. We are so thankful for her help while we were in Raleigh last week; the dogs and Marco love her and so she came over and made sure they were fed and cared for while we were away. She's a true friend that can always be counted on when a need arises. What a comfort friends are!
And yesterday she confirmed something I've been suspecting for a couple of months now: she's expecting a new baby at the end of May! Regular readers here will remember how she tragically lost her first child, Alice, three days after she was born. Marla and her husband were heartbroken and it was too sad for words--they never even got to bring their daughter home from the hospital. I felt that I had lost a niece, a niece of the heart and not of blood, maybe, but no less precious for all that.
And now a new baby is on the way! Marla seemed well and cheerful and deeply happy when she told me. I had been telling Gregg for two months that I thought she was pregnant and he was beginning to doubt me, since nothing was said. But I knew. Marla's been one of my dearest friends for about 15 years now, so I know her pretty well! She is now 15 weeks along, and she and her husband decided to surprise their families with the happy news at Thanksgiving, so of course she didn't want to tell friends before her mother and father and in-laws. So yesterday was the day, and I was finally able to tell Gregg, "Told you so!!" We're so happy for her!
"In the midst of life, we are in death......" but also, in the midst of death we are in life. It's so wonderful to think of a new baby to love next summer after the loss of a mother this winter. Edythe would be absolutely thrilled for Marla--she was so sad for her when Alice passed away, and she loved babies and young children. The circle of life continues as long as there is love and family and friendship tying us all together. What a wonderful, comforting thought that is!