By Heather Rinard
The blades of the grass softly whispered their song in my ear, as I laid sprawled out on the checkered cloth, enjoying our teddy bear picnic. Momma made our childhood magical. From tea parties in the garden, family night games of drawing in the dark and Red hots in our hot cocoa while we stared through the skylights waiting to see a glimpse of Santa’s slay.
Daddy read every book series out there in the 80’s to my baby sister and I. You see Little House on the Prairie was my favorite. My momma fixed My sis’ hair like Laura Ingalls and I always looked liked Nellie Olson. I guess that could be why it was recommended that I revisit kindergarten for the second time. To learn better social skills. Apparently I thought I was the teacher.
That same year my older sister Christie was married in March. I was dripping in cream lace and peach flowers. It snowed that morning.
Now there is only 3 of us siblings at home. By the time I was 10 my brother moved on and I became the oldest.
I debated my way through jr high. Danced on the hearts of many in drill team and in my senior year was captain of the cheerleadering squad.
The van was bulging at the seems. My Nellie belle, a 71 VW bug, was in tow behind. Off we went to Southern California from suburbia, conservative Idaho. Nothing could have prepared me for that eye opening experience into the world. I graduated co-valedictorian with a degree in Interior design.
I tempered with fate, falling for business in front and party in the back, criminal boy.
4 months later pregnant and married. Then 4 years later contemplating suicide and drowning in depression. I tidied up and threw away the debris. My little boy, Gavin and I had a vibrant new beginning.
My heart flutters, swooning over the freckled faced red head. Was it Love at first sight? Matt and I met on June 9th, a month later at minor league baseball game I was wrangled into playing a game on the field. Guess what’s in the box! The last box was a ring, Matt was on bended knee in front of a crowd of thousands professing his never ending love to me. A month later we were married in a funeral home. We drove away hearing the clanging of tin cans behind the hearse.
Shortly after Samis 2nd birthday the Economy tanked and we moved half way across the states to Texas. The next to come was my Izzy bug. Now there’s 3. We were happy and fulfilled. Life was planned out, little did I know that God had other plans. After a failed vasectomy, we were expecting our 4th child.
I stood there knowing that was the last time I would see my daddy. His raspy voice said I love you and drive safely. 26 hours later we pulled into the driveway. At 11pm the call came in, daddy was no longer in pain. We honored daddy by naming our 4th child after him, Charliedawn.
Early Wednesday morning my husband and I were crammed on a small bench in the NICU. The sun filtered in warming the ice cold room.
The room became a blur, my head was spinning and the tears stung my cheeks. Words were spewing out of their mouths like lava hitting the ocean; vegetable, no quality of life, will NEVER know who you are and won’t live past 6 months. Our world fell apart.
The phone rang, on the other end was the PICU Hospitalist. My breathing quickened, my heart sank and the words “nothing more we can do” echoed in my ears. However by the end of the day Charliedawn starred death in the face and screamed I’m not done yet! It’s my birthday and I made it to 1.
Shortly after Charliedawns trach surgery, the 3 kids and I crammed into the mini van and ventured out to the next chapter in our lives.
Cactus and rocks as far as you could see was our landscape of our future.
Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything. Maybe it’s about unbecoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.