It's odd how memories sneak up on you. I am not quite sure why, but Emma has been on my mind a lot lately. There is something so special about grandchildren, those are the ones that you are supposed to spoil beyond belief and not feel bad about.
Although I haven't written much about her, she is in my thoughts constantly. Being born 16 weeks early shows that she was a very impatient little girl. Living much longer than she was "supposed" to shows that she was every inch the fighter. Six incredible months I got to play with her, read to her, love on her and admire her. It was no where near long enough.
Nearly ten months have passed. I still have to catch my breath when I find things that we bought her or see one of the dozens of books that I read to her constantly.
I had promised her that I would teach her things, like how to shop, how to read, and, despite her mother's incredibly bad grammar, how to speak properly. I also had visions of tea parties, sewing doll dresses and catching fireflies.
It's funny how God has other plans.
She was our first grandchild. There is something so very indescribably special about first things. First kisses, first dates, first loves, catching your first fish, your first car, your own first child.
Although there were many things that she missed out on, there were also things that I made sure to accomplish. Certain things that all little girls should experience were carried out as best as possible.
Even though we could not touch her for nearly six weeks, I started reading to her from almost the day she was born. We had read every Dr. Suess book imaginable. Stories from the Bible were also frequent. As soon as we were able, I would rock her and sing to her. I treated her as if she were in my own home, rather than in the hospital where she lived her entire life.
Since all the machines gave her terribly chapped lips, my remedy was a sweet pink lip gloss. Pink was her signature color. When we knew that she was in her last days, I bought her the prettiest pink nail polish, and her manicure was so befitting of a southern belle.
Children are a blessing from the Lord, no matter how long or short you get to hold them. Six months and one week was no where near long enough, but I am grateful for every minute that I got to spend with my sweet angel.
It took me a while to figure out how to "label" myself. One day I was a grandmother, the next I became a grandmother to an angel. Some grandparents call their grandbabies angels, but mine truly is one.
Maybe it is that the holidays have finally slowed down and my thoughts and emotions are catching up with me. Maybe that it's that her actual due date was this week. I only know that nearly a year later, I still ache for her.