|Candace & Bronwyn at Thanksgiving Dinner|
|Bronwyn (still in her hospital 'negligee') checking out what's left of her car...|
|Me with the gorgeous girl who's been filling my heart since before she was even born...|
Bronwyn asked me quietly before dinner whether we were going to do 'that thing,' which I understood immediately in Mummy/daughter shorthand to mean that she wanted to go 'round the table and hear what people were grateful for in their lives. I was tickled that even as a young adult, this was not too hokey a thing to do, and I was eager to say YES. Unsurprisingly, we all have things for which we are grateful, and a few of them are right here...
I am grateful that we were all around that table this Thanksgiving. Because we might not have been. Bronwyn and Candace were in a pretty serious car accident 2 weeks earlier - the car was totalled, and Candace had to have surgery to have steel plates put in her arm to repair a compound fracture. Bronwyn was battered and bruised and had plenty of cuts from broken glass, but physically, that was the worst of it. I cannot imagine a world in which my beautiful girl is not dancing around somewhere, doing Bronwyn-type things, and loving people, as she does. I cannot imagine a time when I might see her smiling face only in a photo, or to remember the sound of her voice, her burbling laugh, rather than hearing them.
I am grateful that the two beautiful Berners, Wylie and Ben, were not in the car, as they usually are. On that day, the girls had decided not to take the dogs with them - 200 pounds of frightened dog flying around a car that was going head over heels into the woods could only have spelled disaster.
Bronwyn and Candace, too, expressed their own gratefulness for just being present, and being ok. And for the family and "framily" (Bronwyn's word for "friends who are like family") who were there to help take care of them in those first few days after the accident.
We are all grateful for so many things - for family, friends, babies, loving hands that prepared the food we ate, and the hands that cleaned up after the meal. And every day of her life, I have been grateful to be Bronwyn's mother. But on this particular Thanksgiving, more than any other one in my life, I am grateful for the mere existence of my beautiful daughter, who fills my heart with a constant joy that is sometimes quite giddy and breathless.