Hello, this is Brian’s sister, Erin, writing to you from Seattle. It has been 4 weeks since I returned from Denver and I still don’t know if I am recovered! I came from my little one bedroom condo where I live by myself. I don’t really cook, do laundry once a week, and clean only when necessary. So as you can imagine being in Denver for even one week was a huge change of pace for me. I had no idea how hard running a household can be. I also had no idea how a person who takes up such little space in the world could be such a force.
Eden did pretty well the first few days I was there, letting me give her baths, playing with my makeup, and letting me teach her new words that may or may not be appropriate (boobies!). She was and is a really funny, smart, amazing child. But she did struggle too. She threw up so hard one day that she just couldn’t quit dry heaving - her precious little body fighting so hard to not feel sick anymore. She screamed bloody murder when I tried to take her for a car ride – she is so frightened to be taken away from her parents. And she burst into tears when she had an accident in her big girl panties – we couldn’t tell if she was either embarrassed or unhappy about being wet.
As adults we are taught to be strong, to fight through even the most difficult of times, to not let hardship wear us down. If we have had great family and friends – a good support system – we manage thru even the most difficult of times. We do it for survival. But we rarely do it with as much charisma and humor as this 2 ½ year old does. Eden Raine has no way of understanding what she went through, she has no way to realize what a tremendously difficult life event she underwent. And she smiles still, she dances, and laughs, and plays, and loves.
When I sat down to write I thought I would talk about how hard it was on me to do some minor housework and play with my niece, but the more I have thought about my week there the more I realized how truly lucky I am to have had the opportunity to spend time with Eden and my family. Eden in her short life has taught me more about fighting thru difficult times, about survival when things seemed impossible, then I could have imagined. I know that she is my niece, so this may seem biased, but she truly is a miracle, and one that I am pleased and proud to watch go through all of life’s adventures!