I ended up being gone from the blog a little bit longer than I meant to be. Call it a mental health holiday. When I wrote last, I had just started a couple of courses of treatment for some of the heaviness and depression that I'd been going through, and I'm happy to say that I'm really feeling much, much better. I'm grateful to my many friends who have written and called in the last few months to check in on me.
Also, I got glasses.
And now I want to tell you about something that's really brought me joy. Something wonderful. If you've been reading the blog for a while, you've seen mentions in my other posts about Courtney carrying a surrogate pregnancy. She's been carrying twins, one boy and one girl. Last Sunday, June 10th, she was 30 weeks pregnant, which meant there were about 10 weeks left before the due date. I'd gone out to see a movie with a friend of mine that afternoon, and when I got home, she called to me from the bathroom. Labor had started. This was not supposed to happen so early.
We went to the hospital to see if there was anything to be done, and they kept Courtney for observation. By the time night fell, it was clear that there was no going back. The babies were coming. It was a very emotional night. I was worried for Courtney. We both were worried for the babies. But when Courtney's doctor, whom we love and who delivered Ava and Jack, showed up, we felt we were in good hands. The babies came by c-section at about two o'clock in the morning, and the first sound we heard was a loud, clear cry from a strong set of lungs.
I'm not going to draw this out - the babies have been amazingly healthy and strong so far. They are both in the NICU still, so that they can grow a little more, but the progress they've made has been remarkable. They're receiving great care, and we've been up there as much as we can to hold them and be with them. Courtney is doing great, too. She took a few days to recover, but is up and feeling wonderful.
The parents came in last week, and they are euphoric about the new members of their family. They're going to have to travel back and forth until the babies are ready to go home with them - they thought there was still more time, and have things to get ready at home! This has been one of the best parts of all, this experience that we're sharing with them, this fruition of the great trust that they placed in us, and especially in Courtney. They are so happy, and it's a joy that we share with them.
In the months since my dad died, I’ve had so many dreams about him. Sometimes the details are strange, or the face isn’t his, but his voice is always exactly pitch perfect. That got me to thinking about our first experiences of the world, before we even leave our mother’s womb. Before we see or hear anything else, we hear the voices of our parents. Those voices reach such a deep, instinctual part of our brain that they are always with us, for the rest of our lives. I like to think that someday thirty years from now, these twins will have dreams where they hear a baritone voice with a Texas accent. They won’t know why, but it will be something comforting and happy for them. It will be something wonderful.