She's not just our third child. She's also the child who completed our family after many years of waiting, and the sadness and tensions of pregnancy loss. As a result, there's a big difference in age between Rebecca and her brothers - Nicholas is 9½ years older than Rebecca, and Jeremy almost 8 years older. An unplanned age gap that we've often wondered about. How will it affect the relationship between our children?
I don't know what would have happened if our family history had unfolded differently. As it happened, Nicholas and Jeremy lived through the loss of their three still-born siblings, and the high risk pregnancy and premature birth of their sister. Years filled with trips to ER, and hospital stays for me and their sister. It wasn't the peaceful, serene and unworried childhood that parents dream about for their children.
Rebecca turning four in a few days is a celebration for her, but also for our whole family. Because all of us made it happen - all five of us working together. And this is the core feeling I get when I look back, and then I look forward, and wonder about this big age gap between our children, how it will affect our family.
Remember the beat-up bicycle that Nicholas and Jeremy fixed up for their sister (here)? Remember how she couldn't grasp the fundamentals of pedaling (here)? Well, now she can ride that bicycle really well. It was her brothers, old enough to calmly, patiently teach her, that got her in balance and pedaling away.
So when I look back and see the tears and the joyful moments, and then I look forward, I see that we all together are making it happen.
Wishing you all a peaceful weekend!