Sunday, February 10, 2008

Celebrating Life

This weekend is all about celebrating life.

We are having Madigan's first birthday party this afternoon. It is very hard to believe that she is one year old! Time has flown by.

It seems like just yesterday we were surprised, nervous, anxious, bewildered, excited and a bit shell-shocked that we were going to welcome a third baby into our family.

It seems like just yesterday we were told the sad news that our unborn baby had a large tumor in her belly.

It seems like just yesterday my waters broke, four weeks early, and we sat in the hospital waiting for seven hours before they could do the c-section.

It seems like just yesterday I held my princess for the first time.

It seems like just yesterday that we brought our little baby girl home.

It seems like just yesterday that Madigan made it through surgery with flying colours and that the doctors successively removed the enormous dermoid tumor.

It seems like just yesterday that the doctors confirmed that the tumor was not cancerous.

It seems like just yesterday Madigan smiled for the first time, laughed for the first time, sat up, crawled, cruised, stole a toy from one of her big brothers, clapped her hands, squealed at the cat, waved hello/bye-bye, hugged, and offered kisses all for the first time.

Mags is a special, funny, strong-willed, loving little babe. She is growing up so fast.

Today we celebrate Madigan's life and all it will bloom into and all the experiences she has had, and will have.

Sadly, today I also celebrate two more lives.

In November I found out a dear friend of mine was diagnosed with leukemia. It was a shock. I saw her just before Christmas. She looked tired, but she was optimistic, and ready to fight for her life. Danuta passed away this week. I am sad. I will miss her. She was such a wonderful, caring, supportive, vibrant, quirky lady. She and I became friends with a very special connection eight years ago. And while both our lives were hectic and very separate from each other, when we ran into each other at the mall, at the community centre or grocery store, we always stood and talked for a long, long time. Today, I celebrate her life and how much she touched me and many others.

Sadly, today I also celebrate my mother's cousin Paddy Madigan. I did not know him very well as he is in my mother's extended family. But I morn for his family, his three young daughters. How terrible it must be to come home from school and find your father unresponsive. How terrible it must be to have just lost your mother a few years ago, and now your father. Cousin Paddy was looking forward to walking two of his three daughters down the aisle this summer. How sad that he will not be there on his daughters' special day. How sad for my mom's cousin Susie, she lost her father a year ago this week, and now her brother. She is desperately trying to comfort her nieces and family. My heart goes out to all of them.

I am trying my best not to be sad. Paddy and Danuta lived wonderful lives, full lives, loving and happy lives. Madigan's whole life is ahead of her and I hope and pray that she has as wonderful of a life as Paddy and Danuta.

Madiginnie-Ginnie, I love you with all my heart, happy birthday sweetheart.

Danuta and Paddy, you will be missed. You were and are loved. I am sad for myself, and all the other people you both touched during your short lives. May you both be at peace in God's hands.
My google-reader is almost at double digits. I am so sorry that I am behind in posting and behind in reading all your wonderful blogs. I am too busy celebrating life...but once things slow down a bit, I promise to catch up. I miss you all!

If Annabelle is reading this...please know that I will contact you early this week. I am so happy we have connected. Hugs to Chloe.


Life As I Know It said...

Wonderful post! A very happy birthday to your precious little girl!
Celebrating life indeed.

A Buns Life said...

I'm just in awe at all you and your family have gone through and yet you seem so much stronger for it all and so positive! Happy Birthday Madigan!!

Pregnantly Plump said...

I'm glad that Madigan is doing so well! I only recently started reading you, so I didn't know she had a rough start.
Sorry about the loss of your friend and family member. I'm glad you're celebrating them, though.
Can't wait to hear how the birthday party went!

Kathryn said...

Life can be so sad and so joyful all at the same time. One life ends and another starts. It is a hard concept for me at times.
I have been struggling with my third boy's birthday this weekend. I am so grateful, but also so scared that time is going so fast.
Happy Birthday to your dear girl. Treasure every moment.
And also, I am so sorry for your losses.

Family Adventure said...

Laura, such extremes in this've been through a lot. I'm glad Madigan is doing so well after her rough start on life! Happy birthday little - big - girl!

I am sorry for your two losses. I admire your decision to celebrate their lives, rather than mourn their passing, though of course the absences are keenly felt.

Great post.


Jenni said...

She is so beautiful! Happy birthday to a special girl blessed with such a wonderful family.

Janet said...

Your little girl is very precious, indeed. What a juxtaposition to the very real losses you describe. I'm sorry.

ALF said...

celebrate away - we'll still be here...

Don Mills Diva said...

I am so sorry for your losses Laura. Happy birthday to your beautiful girl.

organized chaos said...

Hi Laura!
I was online looking for some info--and look who I stumbled across! I love your blog--where do you find the time woman! Happy Birthday to Madigan (a year already huh?!) and good for you for celebrating the lives of those passed.

WomensDaily said...

Celebrating a persons life rather than mourn takes a lot of courage- kudos to you! And a very happy birthday to your little one!

Barrie said...

Bonne fete, Madigan!!