Feeling The Love

I felt a warmth all weekend that had nothing to do with the 99 degree weather. It’s the feeling that comes from looking around and seeing nearly all the people who are most important to you gathered together to help you celebrate something special.
The fun began when my mom came into town to spend a week together before last weekend’s baby shower, eating good food, shopping, enjoying the beach and the good company. Then Friday, the fun continued when I got quite a surprise.
Lee had asked me to have lunch with him at one of our favorite downtown cafes. I met him outside, and as we strolled in together he led me toward a corner table. Where someone was already sitting. It took a second for my brain to register what was going on. Anna had flown in from Portland that morning to surprise me for the baby shower, and I had NO IDEA.
I was so excited. I couldn’t decide what I wanted to do more – look at her, hug her, or cry. So I did all three. It had been more than a year since we’d seen each other, and I was thrilled. Shocked, but thrilled. I missed her very much, and was so touched she made the trip.
My dad came into town that night, and we all enjoyed some good Mexican food and raucous karaoke (a new treat we found as part of our digital cable package).
Saturday morning, more friends and family poured in. My brother and Michelle from Atlanta. Dave and Erin from Miami. Alva from Fitzgerald. My Aunts Carol and Mary from Macon. It was so good to see them all.
We headed to one of my favorite restaurants in town, Elizabeth on 37th Street, where Nikki was throwing us a baby shower.
Nikki hosted a WONDERFUL shower and is such a good friend. The whole event meant so much to me. I looked at her several times during the shower and wondered how I’d gotten so lucky to be the recipient of all her kindness. The location was perfect – beautiful, intimate, and classy. The food was excellent and the games were fun. And we got so many great gifts – some that I know will be treasured heirlooms in our family.
But most of all, I felt so honored to look around at all the people who came to help us welcome our baby. I am so fortunate – so happy to be having this baby, and so thankful for friends and family like these.
Little by little, they all had to go home. Mom and Dad had to leave, then Jeff and Michelle and Alva. I snapped this picture Sunday before Dave and Erin left for Miami.
Sunday night and Monday I spent with Anna. It was wonderful, and reminded me how much I miss having her in town. And the fact that she flew all the way across the country for my baby shower let me know that she missed me too.
This morning, I dreaded hearing my alarm clock, but not because it rang so early. I dreaded it because I had to take Anna to the airport for her trip home. After I dropped her off and pulled away from the curb, it began to rain – a fitting match for my feelings. I hated to see her go. I hated to see everyone go.
But today’s gloom does nothing to diminish the brightness of the weekend. I knew my family cared. I knew my friends cared. But this weekend they proved it over and over. The thank you notes I’m going to write just won’t be enough, because the gifts they gave were so much greater than the cute baby things I opened at the shower. I know I’m a very lucky girl.