It seems like almost yesterday when she was born...a perfect little beautiful girl, happy to greet the world.
After she was born, they wheeled Kitty up to her room where she hopped out of the chair and we began to dance around the room in joy. We had another perfect little baby. Well, not quite. Christina turned into the infant from Heck! Colic. Severe colic. For six flipping months! Once, in order for us to get some rest, Kitty's mother took the baby for an afternoon -- her reasoning being that we knew nothing as parents and that she could easily calm her down. Eileen's reasoning was wide of the mark, "I was going to rock the baby to sleep but I couldn't find a big enough rock!" After six months, the pediatrician gave us some cranky baby drops for Christina; we were so sleep deprived that we spilled half the bottle trying to give her her first dose. The cranky baby drops worked almost instantly. Our baby from Heck turned into the sweetest, most affectionate infant ever. "She's trying to make up for lost time," Eileen said.
Christina (at the time we called her Christy) morphed into pure joy. Laughing, solemn, curious, smart, loving, empathetic, active, contemplative, helpful, smiling, hugging, wondrous, giving...everything a child should be. Sometimes she felt guilty because she was so happy. Sometimes she felt scared when she realized actually how big the universe was. Most of the time she just laughed and played.
She was a creature of habit. There was the year (or was it twelve? It seemed like it) that she would wearing red socks and a print cotton tee-shirt. She was determined. In the first grade she came home and announced her name was Christina, not Christy -- we never called her Christy again. When she was three, she was constantly beating my father at Concentration. "It doesn't matter what she's doing," he said, "I'll always put my money on her."
And then she grew up. Our marvelous little girl became a marvelous woman, a kind, generous, intelligent woman with a strong moral compass. A person whose determination led her to be the best she could be...at school, at work, as a marriage partner, as a mother, as a human being. Despite any and all challenges, she prevails.
And she listens to her mother. Sometimes long afterward.
Always loving. Always giving. Always determined. She brooks no nonsense from deliberately stupid people, yet treats them with kindness.
She and Walt would be more than enough for us, but they also brought us Mark, Erin, and Jack -- three completely different kids, each of whom have stolen our hearts.
We have been blessed with our children and our grandchildren. Christina has been a huge part of our happiness.
Remembering the colic, I can only say, You've come a long way, Baby.
We love you.