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day 45: k and r

March 18, 2011

On Day 45, I couldn’t get a certain song out of my head.  I am a frequent victim of the earworm, I’ll admit, but usually I spend the day with “God Loves a Terrier” from the movie “Best in Show” stuck in my head (“brown sturdy bright and true/they give their hearts to you”).

Just thinking about this movie makes me laugh... but the song drives me nuts.

Day 45’s song was more contextual but equally annoying, I considered, as I drove to a meeting singing, “Ohhhhhhhh, we’re halfway there…OHHHHHHHH!  Livin’ on a prayyyyer!”  Not pretty, I will admit, but true.  My ninety day “a gift a day” project (lowercase letters intentional) is halfway finished.

How am I living now, 45 days in?

So far, I have given away material things (food, jewelry, accessories, books, music, artwork, clothing, lavender dryer bags, ugly crafts), I have given away cash (to the Duke Lemur Center, to the Red Cross, to the Me Fine foundation, to individuals), I have given away words (letters, Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese,” quiz to Roberto), and I have given away time.  I am on the bone marrow registry now.  I’ve met people I never would have crossed paths with otherwise.  I’ve been inspired in a hundred different ways by innumerable kindnesses, acts I stepped over in my mad rush a mere 45 days ago.

It has cracked me open, and the light just pours in.

You, of course, are a part of that light.  Whether you read once a day or once a week, just knowing I’ve got traveling companions makes the trip all the richer.  Thank you.

So, back to why we’re here, right?  Day 45’s gift.

On Day 45, we returned to the popular, “My Nieces Are Getting A Bunch of My Stuff Whether They Want it Or Not” series.

Let me introduce you to my twin nieces, R and K.  R is a graceful little sunbeam, all dimples and cartwheels, with my sister’s meticulous nature.  K is artistic, with elegant long hands and a drop-dead smile.

They are both miracles, of course, but K was nearly lost to us before life even gave her a chance.  Born early and tiny, K was not predicted to live through her first night on the planet.  Her parents named her after me.

I wrote about the girls’ birth in an essay published seven years ago in the now-defunct Urban Hiker magazine (in it, I changed their names):

“Within hours of their birth, the doctor recommended making funeral arrangements for little Sarah, born too soon…  I, light years away in North Carolina, could not breathe for two days.  I felt as though I was living with Sarah’s underdeveloped lungs… labored, underwater.  But, miraculously, both Sarah and Grace would be okay, held aloft (I believe) by the energies and prayers of all their friends and family.”

When I wrote this, I knew both K and R would be “okay.”  I didn’t know that they would be — in spite of their terrifying beginnings — the sweet, complicated, brilliant little beings they have become.

I actually offer a couple of gifts to K and R.  First of all, I’ll be sending along the essay I wrote so many years ago for Urban Hiker, to be read when they are old enough to appreciate it.  Secondly, K will get these:

They are beautiful opal earrings my parents brought me from a trip to Australia and New Zealand many years ago.   I’m sure her parents will save them until she is old enough to take care of them, but when she is ready, I think my little namesake will love them.  She loves all things  sparkly, so these seemed a natural fit for her.

This is a watch my grandmother gave me for my high school graduation.

I know -- nice picture.

R is named for my grandmother, so I want her to have it.  Her conscientious nature now makes me think she’ll appreciate a dependable timepiece later, and I hope she likes wearing a little piece of history.

I hope, too, that the girls will appreciate reading about their history one day… even if it is just from their old aunt’s perspective.

So, this is where I’m living on Day 45.  Steeped in gratitude for all that I have, and facing the next 45 days with a hopeful gaze.

Take my hand and we’ll make it, I swear.

Here’s to a day overflowing with gifts.  Thank you — as always — for showing up.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Dawn permalink
    March 18, 2011 8:31 am

    It’s hard to believe that you’re at the halfway point already. Well, easy for me to say — you’re doing all the work and I’m just reading about it.

    Thank you for sharing this journey with us. I’m enjoying it and it’s given me some ideas of my own. But, please – no more talk of earworms! It’s going to take a lot of effort to get that Bon Jovi song out of my head today. 🙂

    • March 18, 2011 8:47 am

      Hi Dawn. Apologies for the earworm :). I have been told that the best antidote is to hum a few bars of Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock and Roll,” but I think that might create a secondary problem. Thank you so much for your encouragement, and I really appreciate hearing from you. Have a great day!

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  1. day 55: little miracles « a gift a day

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