Saturday, January 26, 2008


Tonight is JB's birthday. My son is one year old. He just had his first big birthday party in where he was dressed in a brand new outfit, wore a hat, ate ice cream cake, pulled off his hat, mushed his cake into his outift, threw up on the floor and then mushed it all into the tiny fluff of hair he has.

He cried at the end of it when it was way past his bedtime, and then on coming home, refused to go to bed.

Now, in his favorite jammies, JB is on my lap, holding his helium balloons and watching me type my newest (long overdue) post.

I remember a year ago when I left my sister's wedding to meet my new baby. (Yes, she had her anniversary party tonight too!) He was so small and soft when I first held him, and I cried along with his first wail. He had just as little hair as he has now and we knew right away who he looked like and then changed our minds a thousand times until the bris and then a million times until today.

He's the baby that came after chemo, after all the worries, after the old chapter in my life; he is the new one. He's the baby that's my special miracle.

And then I look at my sister's baby. Her baby is just as small (okay, he's an 8 pounder, but you know...) just as soft, and cries much louder. (He also has more hair...) They also decided he looks just like his father, (but they aren't changing their minds about that a million times....) and you know what? He is no less a miracle than my son is.

So he wasn't born after cancer, and he was born to two baruch Hashem healthy parents almost a year to their wedding, and so he didn't come with all the worries. But just like JB, he comes with all the nachas, the joy, the excitement, and the sleepless nights.

I don't think my sister sees her son any differently than I see mine. Some people say I need to appreciate JB more than others need to for their kids, and while I see what they are saying, I don't agree. I don't think that JB came with more nissim than anyone else. I think that others need to see how even a regular, uncomplicated birth is just as special as mine.

Miracles are miracles and it doesn't matter when they happen or to whom they happen to or after what or why. I think the most important part of miracles are to realize that they happen even in the quietest of ways and that we need to keep our eyes open to find them and to be grateful.

For my JB who has just fallen asleep and is still holding tightly to his balloons, I wish him the best of everything always. I'm not good at giving brachos; I never know what to say, but I do know what I feel and I hope that JB gets everything I want for him and even more.

I know that JB is the one getting the presents tonight, but if he only knew that I get a bigger one every single day when I get to kiss him and hold him... You think he's young enough to feel jealous???

Old Kvetch

Old Kvetch is a new reader who just left me a comment on my last post.

The comment was too funny and is so along the lines of the next post I planned to write, that I'm using it instead...

Old Kvetch, hope you don't mind, and thanks!!!

I just stumbled across your blog and have only begun to read some of what you have written so please accept my apology if you've already covered the following topics:

The "my uncle had an even worse problem blah blah blah blah' visitor who seems to think you'd enjoy hearing about a stranger's problem of fourteen years ago while you’re trying to get your mind around everything you must face right now. Somehow, knowing that someone I never met had a different illness in a different part of the body at a different time of their life and was treated with technology as closely related to state of the art medical care today as blood-letting, and mustard plaster and wearing fresh garlic around my neck is supposed to be uplifting.

The visitor who assures you in response to a set back and bleak prognosis c"v that 'eh, doctors, they don't know what they are talking about' (usually followed by an uncle story). Somehow that is supposed to make you feel better about the DOCTOR who is either going to explore your insides or invade (hopefully the correct) parts of your body with radiation or chemo.

DON’T even think of getting me started about the newly rediscovered best friend you haven't seen since kindergarten (and you never liked back then either because he was always trying to sell you the second 'half' of his sandwich, which just happened to be the crust) who shows up with a pitiful gift to make you feel guilty about not buying the alternative medicine product he drove 14 hours from Pittsburgh (without stopping!) to show you as soon as he heard you were sick, without mentioning that he happens to sell it for the Amway equivalent of junk science and even bought a $300.00 supply for you while driving (14 hours non-stop!) FROM PITTSBURGH! (could you pay me back in cash? I don't have a bank account right now) where he had gone to save the life of a yogurt farmer who LIVES on this miracle cure and has survived every illness from male pattern baldness (by rubbing it on his scalp which he has prepped by soaking it all night in cultured organic orange juice) to cancer in every major organ of the body (non of which the doctors could diagnose because they are in a conspiracy with Lyndon LaRouche, Merck, the FDA, Dick Cheney and Big Oil) all caused by his drinking a can of Splenda-sweetend diet soda while standing under the path of a Concord jet on a day he forgot to wrap his head with an extra layer of aluminum foil, all by ingesting copius dosages of the Original, Genuine, ProFauxFlaxiodtrated (unadulterated, of course) which the FDA has been preventing his uncle (the one who survived something worse than you have by staying away from tap water and now showers in WalMart Naturally Desalinated Spring Water - do you think you could help us raise money for him so he can shower in it four times a day like a mequbal he met on a secret flight to Bagdad to daven at the kever avraham avinu would have been buried in if Iraq had been Eretz Yisroel told him to?) from distributing so it is only sold in health food stores (and kept under the counter next to Dr. Marvel's Marvelous Midlife Malitated Midrif Melter that Oprah was censored for when she was this-close to bringing on her show because ABC is secretly owned by a French company that manufactures blood pressure medication that no one would need if they all lost 50 lbs.! They've been using it in Europe for 40 YEARS!) and (take a breath, you sound like you WALKED from Pittsburgh!) dropped everything to drive 14 hours in the other direction to pick up for you at the only surviving retailer selling this stuff because all the others were rounded up and shipped to a secret air-force base in Wyoming (which they have to disguise as an old hippie commune every four years when the national media looks up Wyoming on the map to report on the outcome of the presidential primaries, in which all three voter participate).

SEE! You got me started!

Stay tuned next week for the next episode of "The Chizuk I Could Live Without" in which the adult child of your grandfathers great uncle Mutchkeh' youngest daughter's music teacher's cleaning lady's landlord (in Brownsville. Isn't it just terrible what the goyim did to that neighborhood? I remember when you could walk there at three o'clock in the morning, but your too young, you wouldn't remember, ah kids today what do they know!) offers (threatens) to drive you to all your doctor appointments (by the way, you think maybe can we use your car? I don't have plates on mine right now because my license was suspended a few years ago because I didn't have insurance which I couldn't afford any more after some anti-semit cop wrote me 27 tickets, one for each red light I ran one purim. What did he want anyway? I knew it was no good to drive after so many drinks so I was trying to get home and stop driving as soon as possible and anyway the red light should only be for cars on the street, not the ones on the sidewalk, right?)