I arrived at the hospital before 6:30 pm to find Arya in the arms of her Aunt Leilani, a close friend of Christy, and her grandparents nearby. Leilani has two children so she's much more experienced with newborns. I didn't ask to hold Arya immediately. I thought I should wait for my turn, not knowing how long she has held her already. I made my hellos, congratulated Christy on giving life to another beautiful baby and just watched Arya. I listened to Christy's labor story which was much different from her experience with her first born. I am so proud of her. I couldn't imagine what she was going thru but women do it every day, even more than once so it can be done. My grandmother had twelve! But Christy did an amazing job. Arya is perfect.
Eventually Leilani gave Arya to Christy to check something out and Christy asked if I wanted to hold her. I was sitting on the side of the bed and of course I wanted to hold her! I was at the hospital the same day after Nate was born and I couldn't miss meeting Arya within hours of her entering this world. I didn't even get to do this with my nephew, Brent. So this is incredibly special to me. Christy is one of my best friends. She's my rock. I love her and her babies as if we were blood relatives. I was about to hold my new niece for the first time.
Christy gently handed Arya to me and she was so incredibly tiny. I positioned her in my arms and I was incredibly overwhelmed with emotion and started to cry. She was just so beautiful, innocent, little and already loved so much, and I had the honor to call her my niece. It was just so amazing to have this moment because I will never have it with her again and I had to embrace it and let my emotions take over me. And I didn't care how I looked, who I was crying in front of or that it was even captured. It's a moment I'll never forget.
I keep saying that I want a boy if I were to have only one child of my own, but girls are climbing the charts. I really think it's because of my niece, Eliana. I just fell in love with her immediately. I met her in Pennsylvania at just one or two months old and then not again until she was almost three as she was one of two flower girls for my wedding. But in between I definitely wanted to be an active roll in her life as much as I could with being on the other side of the country. I'm the one that knows her birthday, her middle name and the first one she asked for when she woke up from her nap in the car while on the way to my house. "Where's Bernadette?" We completely bonded and I loved how smart, funny and talkative she was. She sang my favorite song from my childhood movie, Annie, and again as I got my hair done for my wedding. At the reception, she and I stole the dance floor as I picked her up, danced with her and sang along to her one of my favorite, Los Lonely Boys' "Smile." I'll never forget that. "And now you're here, You're right on time....I see every shade of love in your eyes." I haven't seen her since but try to keep in touch. She is always in my thoughts and I have pictures of her all around my house.
Eventually, it was just Christy, Arya and I in the hospital room and I tried to help her out with whatever she needed. I obviously wasn't stingy with the baby but Christy did want to take a shower so I had some alone time with Arya. Christy turned on the television but I didn't want to do anything but look at how precious she was. I sang La Contestacion by the Los Lonely Boys to her. It's my all-time favorite song and I still haven't heard it live in front of an audience. I've had a special performance of it so I guess I can't complain. I just loved holding her, looking at her, loving her. I did have to go home to my other baby: my four-legged one but told Christy I would try to come by the following day.
I did end up making it to the hospital the following day, Wednesday, 9/11. I'm really surprised she didn't have that many visitors. I was the second one for the day and it was 6:30 pm again. So I got some quality time with the two of them. I got to babysit again while it was shower time and I sang to her again, rocked her, talked to her. I didn't want to put her down. I'm glad I came by the hospital again and was there for the both of them. I know she would do it for me. Until this weekend...
Happiness is being an auntie.