Given the fact that bug had a 102 degree fever, the world’s most disgusting virus aptly named foot and mouth disease, we got here safely on Tuesday night. So we were off to a bang arriving in SC this week. The poor girl had blisters on her face, knees, butt and feet. People literally moved away from us in the airport. I don’t exactly blame them. The girl kept her face glued to mine so if I get this thing…..
Alas, we’ve mostly healed and bug is back to acting like herself. So far she’s let me know that she hates riding in the car by screaming at an unnatural decibel, prefers to walk by standing on my foot and digging her nails into my thigh and going for a ride. She enjoys plunging her face in the dog’s water bowl and then racing to the back screen door to push herself out onto the wooden stairs. Basically she’s tried to kill herself any way possible since we arrived. So I’m…. tired.
So on one of the rougher days I hauled bug over to Walgreens to pick up even more medicine. As I propped her up on the counter to pay, the four people behind me came up closer and leaned in. I steeled myself for hearing aid comments, what’s wrong with her comments, or pity stares. What happened though… caught me off guard. One after the other people ooo’d and ahhh’d over her.. “She is soooooo precious!” “My word, is that little one cute!” “How old is she, honey?” And I remembered why I moved here. I took the deepest breath and realized for the most part we’ve left so much behind us. We live in the south now where kindness really does prevail.
On top of this neighborly love, yesterday I unpacked one of my miscellaneous boxes that had a wine opener, dog treats, medical records and Landon’s baby book. I never got around to filling out the book yet but it holds every card bug received in her first year of life. Every note y’all sent us, I kept. So as she napped, I read. And cried. I had not read your words, sweet friends, since I received them when she was born. I had not reflected on her surgery since you sent her cards covered in bedazzled band aids. I was filled with so much positive energy that it gave me the extra strength I needed to finish the week. I’ve given thanks for y’all over the last year but felt like doing it again today. My mother’s friends, coworkers turned confidants, best friends, godparents, strangers, and friends with whom I’ve not spoken in a decade… so many of you have sent love our way. I re-read your words and my heart was so full I thought I would explode. I fully intend to pay it forward the rest of my life. I only hope to be the kind of friend to y’all when you need it.
As we adjust down here and begin this new life, I’ll do so knowing that so many wonderful people have our backs. I know y’all will be here or there when we need you. I’m SO grateful for that fact.
I’ll now go back to trying to get used to the quiet life….