Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Twenty one years ago today . . .

. . . my nephew, Zach was born. His mother, my youngest sister Janet, struggled for many hours to deliver her first son, but he refused to cooperate. He seemed reluctant to leave the cozy, quiet spot he had occupied for so many months. A C-section put an end to that and his beautiful self entered our world.

Time flies is so cliché AND so true. Before our eyes, he has transformed from a cuddly, curious little guy into a thoughtful, caring man. He’s still a gifted cuddler/hugger and undeniably handsome. I get the feeling that, like his Dad, he’s not entirely comfortable with his good looks. I think that adds to his appeal.

Seven years after Zach was born, Alex made a scary entry into the world. He had several serious and potentially deadly health issues. He spent his first three months in Children’s National Medical Center, about 60 miles from his family’s home. His mother and I spent many hours and days with him there. In no small part, Janet’s strong will and faith carried Alex through those crucial months.

Alex may have been fragile during his first couple years of life, but Zach was the one on his support team that encouraged him to be a normal little boy. His loving patience and protection of his brother could have easily turned to resentment over all the attention Alex’s precarious health necessitated. It never did.

Zach has become more reserved the older he gets, however there are still ample opportunities for hugging. The marvelous thing about his hugs is that they are sincere and last as long as the huggee wishes. Not many young men are so open to hugging an older, chubby aunt or his forgetful grandmother.

Can you tell that I’m proud of this guy and love him to death? He has given me so many happy memories: flying kites and picnicking at Hains Point, exploring in Rock Creek Park and Roosevelt Island. He, his Mom and I made several memorable visits to the old Capital Childrens’ Museum, too. Alex joined us once and Zach was a perfect guide for his little bro.

So . . .. happy birthday, Zach. I’m so glad you are in my life!

Zach: Alex's official shoe-tier.

Zach: Poppy's official crab pot look-out.

Best buddies with Grammy and Alex

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