I want to take some time out from my usual very witty repartee, and share some serious thoughts about these children God has given me. I hope that these words that I write on this blog - sometimes with much biting sarcasm, and just as often with tongue firmly planted in-cheek -- are not offensive. I love my children and am thankful every day for them. I have watched my mother mourn the loss of a child, watched dear friends do the same more than once, and have watched those closest to me struggle with the realization that a biological child will not be a reality for them. I don't want to ever be seen as taking my children for granted. Even on the worst of days, Emma Clare will look up at me with a sideways glance while breastfeeding, and give me the most impish grin. It would melt your heart. I can't imagine a day without her, or without Patrick, or Annie, or Aidan. They are given to us as a solemn responsiblity and a pure joy.
As I write this, my heart is heavy. People who I do not know, friends of friends, have just taken their two-year old home from the hospital, to die in her own bed, in their arms. I'm overwhelmed with grief for this family who I will likely never meet. But we share the bond of parenthood and for that reason, the grief that I feel right now is very real. Despite all prayers to the contrary, it seems that for His purposes, God will not see fit to relieve them of this agony. Tomorrow I will probably complain about my teenager not wanting to wear new shoes, and they will never have the chance to complain about their child's teen years. It's for this reason that I hope, in the midst of the amusing expositions of my miniature trials and tribulations, that I don't lose sight of the enormity of the four gifts I've been given, and that you don't mistake my feeble attempts at humor for ingratitude.