I have been thinking about this photo of me ever since Ed took it back in June when Jackson was about a month old. Unlike the photos of me before Hudson died or the ones Ed took of me when we were in Paris in December, I recognize this woman. I understand her. It took me a long time to figure out just what it is that I see in her face that is so familiar. And then it came to me.
This woman is grateful. She is grateful to be here. She has survived the deepest sorrow there is and is still standing. Grief is now her constant companion. Her hair is infinitely grayer than it was a year ago. Her smile is knowing, knowing in a way that most don’t know and hopefully never will. Her eyes still shine, but they reflect a different light than they ever did before.
But she is here. She is smiling. Her eyes are shining. For while grief is her constant companion, so are love, joy, and hope. She has the love of an exceptional man. She has two beautiful children, each one a gift she did nothing to deserve. And she has a future full of hope.
I recognize this woman, finally, as myself. Somehow, I made it here. I am a lucky, lucky girl.
And I’m so glad I’m here.
“So Glad I’m Here” ~ Elizabeth Mitchell