i got the text around 10:15 wednesday night. after months of waiting and speculating, my nephew was making his way into the world.
i ended up leaving around 2:15 the following morning. between constant texts, my own nervousness and my brain not shutting itself off completely, i knew there'd be no rest for me. so i drove the two hours to see my sister become a mom.
there were a lot of thoughts racing through my mind while i waited. i'd close my eyes and remember her and me sitting on one of our beds, playing cards, her bottle cap glasses matching the amazing ability for my hair to hold a perm. there's a picture that captures this scene perfectly :: christina smiling up at the camera, me taking in my surroundings. i remembered her calling me sissy as a term of endearment and me feeling the intense need to protect her.
i remembered the conversations we had about college and life and boys and most recently...motherhood.
and now, waiting in labor and delivery, there was nothing i could do but pray.
it's a weird feeling, you know. your sister, the one who followed you around and knows your affinity for hip-hop and has seen more than her fair share of embarrassing moments; the one you teased and loved and fought and cried and resented and protected; the one who held your hand and whispered stories and recited psalms against the darkness....
it's weird to know she's experiencing a moment all-together gut wrenching and holy and well...other and you can't be there, holding her hand through it all. it's weird to know there are others who are there, taking your space, holding her steady through the storm.
my nephew came around 9:30am.
just like his mama, he tore into existence - intent on making a point. when we received word, there was a collective sigh of relief. my other sister cheered. the family waiting next to us smiled and nodded their congratulations.
ezekiel freedom was here.
i let myself be overcome then. i walked into the bathroom and shut myself in the stall, letting the tears fall hot and fast. it was just all a little much for my heart to take. i needed to see my sister. i needed to hold my nephew. i needed so many things, and i still can't articulate the pride i felt for what my sister accomplished.
my mom came into the waiting room shortly after and called me and my sister back to see christina. i walked into the room and the first thing that popped into my head was my god she's beautiful. and she was. even though she'd just experienced what women are capable of, what we let go and what we push through, her eyes held a light.
it's true. we aren't little girls anymore, sissy. and you are one incredibly beautiful mama.