First day of school.
Last time all seven of them will have a first day of school together again.
Last year of high school for three.
Last year of junior high school for two.
First year of primary school for the other two.
Last time I will get a photo like this again.
Last sleep in for a while.
First time I’ve missed a substantial amount of the Summer break.
Last time I don’t listen to my gut when Ivy tells me she feels unwell.
Last time I listen to a doctor tell me there is nothing to worry about in regards to Ivy’s renal system.
Last day in the hospital: Tuesday.
First chance I’ve had to write and thank you all for your love and kind words.
First six loads of washing done and dried!
First day of the house feeling empty again.
Last time the sausage dogs barked at the new kittens: 11:35am.
Last time I warned them that kittens have claws: 11:36.
Last time kittens used claws 11:37.
First time I’ve looked at myself in the mirror since the last admission.
Last time I look in the mirror.
First time I’ve had to plan dinner in weeks.
First time I’ve wished for cooler weather this season.
First day I’ve taken a good look at the house and garden since we’ve arrived home and thought
there is so much that needs to be done that I don’t know where to start.
First day I’ve felt like I could breathe out.
Have you had some firsts and lasts lately?
Life consists of moments:
the long ‘when are you coming home’ hug from your husband in the middle of the ward’s hallway.
The words unspoken yet known.
The short hours of escape from the hospital so you can spend some time with your son.
The way he looks at you with a mixture of love and sadness.
The way the world looks different, more colourful, somehow with his easy words
and outlook on the universe.
The conversations with your four eldest children late at night, while their smallest sister sleeps in the huge hospital bed.
Wishing for a different life.
Wanting to make it better.
That first morning smile from the girl
and you just know that everything will be okay -
that she’s (we’ve) dodged another bullet.
Missing home and everything about it but mostly the people who reside within it.
The way your heart aches when you catch yourself wanting something other than this life for the smallest girl.
Another day in the hospital, nerves wearing thin -
both yours and the doctor’s
but the girl just smiles a wistful smile and says;
“it’s okay. We can go home another time” and settles down against the white hospital sheets, as if she has known all her life that she has belonged there in some way.
Life is made up of moments
and some take your breath away.