It is hard not to be hopeful when you've "seen the light"--when you have learned that the darkest moments illuminate.
But an epiphany came despite the darkness--or more likely, because of it. I can tell you the moment it all started to swing, the moment I felt awe instead of fear about our new life with Bridget. She was sleeping peacefully, recovering from her surgery. Chris and I were standing together, studying her, completely absorbed in her and in that moment. We'd been so quiet following her birth, not knowing how to console each other or how to sort it all out. I've said it before, how it occurred to us at the same time, how we looked at each other and smiled. We had the same realization at the same time: Bridget is ours, she is whole and she is perfect. There are no mistakes, we are all perfectly made.
We are all perfect and imperfect at the same time. Bridget has given us the gift of seeing both our own potential and our own limits, and of seeing people without distinction by side-stepping artificial boundaries which separate and belittle. She's given us a lesson in reverence, in understanding that there is something greater while celebrating the life that is ours.