Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Regarding Angelique

She is my oldest child. She is my heart walking outside of my body. She is my first experience of selfless love. I was her first home and she was my first resident. She is the oldest of my three children. She has taught me more than I could ever teach her.

When Angelique arrived I was 19 years old and Wahid was 23. Oh my God, how much we loved this little girl. I didn’t understand how no one prepared us. No one let us know that nothing in the world would ever match the love I would have for my children. No one let me know the love I would have for my first child.

Love was in the air. I had read once that if you love someone put their names in a circle, because hearts can be broken, but circles never end. Into the circle Angelique went. As a matter of fact the circle started with Angelique.

Angelique looked like Snow White when she was a baby, with her black hair and peaches and cream skin. And now I am sure Snow White wishes she looked like Angelique.

Eventually as all little girls and boys tend to do, Angelique grew up and today she is 33 years old and has a little girl of her own. Now she knows the love. I don’t have to tell her, she feels it herself. Her heart too, now walks outside of her body.

Angelique’s 33 years are like whispers of love on the wind to me. Secrets and stories told on whispers from the stars to the leaves on the trees; down through the openings of the windows and past the burgundy sectional to the second bedroom up the hall to the right. Whispering I love you, you are my first child; you are my best foot forward.

I am in awe of the memories I have of Angelique. No matter how things have evolved in my life to this point, I can truly say there is so much joy. Angelique is one of my three greatest joys.

It is the tiniest distance those 33 years. I was carrying her in my arms, caressing her and counting her little fingers and toes. Sitting beside her crib admiring her hair and her skin and brushing aside imaginary pixie dust in case a fleck got caught in her eye or settled too close to her baby finger, trying to leave some of its magic when surely she had enough of her own.

Angelique was a happy little girl with big hazel eyes that sparkled all the time. If the power ever went out and we had no candles we would remember that we could sit Angelique up in the middle of the room and her sparkling eyes would give us light. We never ever had to worry about power outages after she was born.

For Angelique’s second birthday I got her a Fisher Price alphabet desk and she played with that forever and ever. Letters and words have always fascinated Angelique and by the time she was three-years old she would copy out the names from the white pages of the phonebook.

Because Angelique’s birthday is on the 31st of December she was always the youngest child in her class at school or at dancing or at baseball, basically anything she joined. If I tell you she is a ‘brainiac’ I would not be lying.

Angelique was the most curious little girl you could ever imagine. She took things apart just to see that she could put them back together. Words, science, figuring things out (including her cousin Ben); no stone will be unturned if she decides to turn it.

When Angelique was little many people thought that she was shy and I have to tell you if you ever have thought that, you would be wrong. Angelique checks out a situation first and then decides if she wants to be involved or not.

At seven years old Angelique got a typewriter for Christmas and wrote many stories for our listening pleasure. She sang many songs for Nadalene to help her fall asleep (the vegetable song is just one example) and she let Nathan sleep with her all the time because of the crocodiles waiting for him in the hallway (even if Nadalene wanted him out).

Angelique was a little girl with the best of manners and her heart beamed like a beacon. Deep inside she knew her name was more than just a name for me; it was her essence.

It is hard for me to believe that I have been a mother for 33 years now. I can’t think of anything I did that was truly meaningful and worthwhile before I became her Mom.

Just as Angelique played school with her friends (remember Cindy) everyday after school, she now gets paid to be a teacher for real. She teaches Grade 7 and absolutely loves her kids. She is completely invested in them and I am so happy to know that these lucky children have a teacher who completely cares about their well-being.

As a woman, Angelique is an incredible individual. She has helped me so much in so many ways.

When Angelique got her Honors in Psychology she would be so sweet and tell me and her Dad that we did everything right (we of course know we didn’t but we sure did try). When Angelique got her Education Degree we could not have been prouder (I think I would have loved to be a teacher).

Angelique got married to Don and they have given me my first grandchild (my darling girl Josephine Renee). How much do you think that means to me?

I love so many things about you Angelique and I love that you were the first person to make me feel like a million bucks. You would run into my arms and yell ‘Mommy, Mommy.’ I know that having your own little girl now you get exactly what I mean. You are truly one of the three most spectacular things to happen to me and I will love you forever and ever and ever.

She is the oldest of my children, my heart walking outside of my body, my first lesson that I could love someone better than myself. Angelique thank you for the privilege.

Happy Birthday Angelique. Love Mom, Dad, Nadalene, Nathan and Josephine.


Anonymous said...

What an amazing tribute to your daughter, so touching and so real. She sounds like a wonderful daughter. You are so lucky to have each other. I love your granddaughter's name Josephine Renee.You are so right that no one prepares you for the absolute love for you first born.
I hope you are feeling better today.Happy New Year.
LOve, Barb

Flor Larios Art said...

Hi Renee,
Happy Birthday to Angelique!
Beautiful words to your daughter, She is an angel.

Ben said...

That was a great read!! my favorite so far!!

growing up with angelique, every single day, is probably the single best childhood memory i have, and your words captured a lot of the feelings i have for ang.

she was smart enough to get both of us through school in our younger days(i would miss school often, and barely pay attention when i was there. angelique did a better job of preparing me for a test in one night than any of my teachers did in the months leading up to any big test or exam.

i can probably say i knew angelique better than anyone else in the world for several years growing up and if there is any doubt in anyone's mind i can assure you...she is NOT shy, and she is VERY curious.

i remeber sitting with angelique while she was getting chemo, and the nurse would set something up for her, something ang was told was very very important and not to touch, disturb or interupt in any way. the nurse would barely get her back turned and ang had the machine stopped, tube disconnected, and started going through her thorough exam.

i would always get a little panicked and say " ang, what are doing? dont fool around with that! are you nuts?

she would respond..."whatever, im just curious to see how it works, it cant hurt to stop it for two seconds"

"angelique, stop it. put it back together....just ask the nurse how it works or what it does exactly"

she would smurk and say" gimme a break" then we would both laugh...mostly about how everyone thought i was behind all the trouble we seemed to find" (hello aunty shelly's car)

happy birthday ang, i love you!!

thanks for that aunty renee, love you too!!

Noreen said...

Angelique has been blessed to have such a wonderful, loving and proud mother. Thank you for sharing, for me (I'm selfish) to see, the deep love you have for her on this special day.
Looking forward to seeing you in the new year and wishing that 2009 will continue to bless you and your family.
Love Noreen

Renee said...

Love you too Ben. You made me laugh. xoxoxoox

Mickey said...

Happy Birthday Angelique. Who in the world does love this beautiful beautiful woman. Angelique you are truly a gift to everyone who has the privilege of knowing you. You are kind sweet caring loving and so much more. I love you, you are a doll. Love Auntie Mickey

Anonymous said...

What an amazing tribute to your first born. Loved it!

Happy Birthday Angelique!


glorv1 said...

Wonderful tribute to your daughter, Angelique. That is a beautiful name too. She is a special daughter and please wish her a Happy Birthday and a Happy New Years to all of you. Take care.

jacquie said...

happy birthday ang.
hope you are having a wonderful birthday holiday.
ben you gave me a good laugh as well because auntie renee and i took ang to get an mri once
they told her it is extremely important that she does not open her eyes during this test. well of course auntie renee and i are now adding make sure don't open your eyes no matter what as we both knew how curious she was....what did she do but open her eyes and told us so when she came back out from her mri.
we both gave her shit and told her that it could have serious side effects....she just laughed and said wouldn't i already feel them ...nothing's going to happen.
i have the privilidge of being angelique's god mother and i feel honored and very loved by angelique....who is an amazing young woman... who could teach us all a lesson or two.
love you to the moon and back aj

Shelly said...

Angelique - never shy, but lets not forget "strong willed & proud" ... once when she was between 3-4 (I was raising her at the time) and some kids came running to the door in the townhouses yelling "Angelique pooped herself! Angelique pooped herself!" I'm like "WHAT?!" so I go and find her with a million kids around yelling and pointing at her while she quietly stood at the sandbox - head held high, playing by herself with diarrhea running out her bathing suit and down her legs – I couldn’t have felt any prouder – tiny, little Angelique stood there like the queen of England and showed just as much grace … is it any wonder we are all enamored with her?

Love you Ang - Happy Birthday xoxo

P.S. Thanks for clearing that up for me Ben … not too many people know you, Jamie and Ang did time at the Pen - I mean my house

YayaOrchid said...

What a beautiful post Renee! I love the poetry and beauty in your words. Thank you for sharing! Angelique is also blessed to have you in her life.

Anonymous said...

What beautiful heartfelt words. It seems so little to call them words as they read so much more. Happy birthday Angelique and a happy new year.
Thank you so much for all your messages, mean so much to me.
Ebay new rules set, caused the upset. It is a long story which happened over the Christmas period. They have made it really difficult for sellers when a sale goes wrong and buyer is hard to please. I did give all kindness back, sometimes it is not enough. Ebay new way works against the seller. I closed my Ebay account.
I am not sure this is the best way to go, do wish to make a statement towards Ebay in the help to make a stand for better services for Ebay sellers.
I had so many of you wonderful bloggers being such super stars and my heart as being given a big kiss better. Thank you so much Renee!

Anonymous said...

Annia - my original "better half"

love always and happy birthday


natalie said...

ang is everything and more you said in this post. she's so good. i love the expression "she is my heart walking outside my body".

angelique said...

What an amazing tribute to me. Thanks Mom. I have been waiting since I read Nathan's in April, to read lovely. When I spend time with Josephine, I am always thinking,'so this is what it is like. This is how much my Mom loves me (and then add years and memories to that). How crazy to help someone hold there head up, to learning to use the stairs when they walk. How beautiful is this love between mother and child. When I saw the picture, I cried and I wanted to be that girl again.

Renee said...

Angelique -- to me you are always that girl. Whenever you want to be her you can be. It is just that you are so many other wonderful things now too.

I love you so much.

Love Mom xoxoxo

kathy hare said...

this is such a beautiful post.. it brought tears to my eyes..

Deborah said...

OMGoodness, so much love.
**weeping with overflowing Joy** Deb

kj said...

i leave a comment here, a year later. i think this might have been the first post by you i ever read.

you describe this love just perfectly. we mothers all know.

you are one of a kind, renee. i love you so much.

Angie Muresan said...

Oh Angelique, you have such an amazing mom! I haven't even met her and yet I love her pure, beautiful soul, more than I can say. She is my inspiration. Happy birthday to you!!!

Kathleen said...

You totally captured my own feelings of parenting. What a blessing, Angelique. And to love teaching 7th graders is makes her a hero to me. How fortunate for those students!

angelique said...

Angelique’s 33 years are like whispers of love on the wind to me. Secrets and stories told on whispers from the stars to the leaves on the trees; down through the openings of the windows and past the burgundy sectional to the second bedroom up the hall to the right. Whispering I love you, you are my first child; you are my best foot forward.

I just love this Mom. I have read it a thousand times. So much magic and love that you have given us growing up and I love that you can give it to Josephine and Domenic too.

BT said...

What a beautiful tribute to your lovely daughter. Also lovely replies from Ben and Angelique herself. You are all truly blessed in your unselfish love for one another. Happy Birthday Angelique.

rochambeau said...

Dear Angelique,
Your mother gets you. She loves you and your essence. She has made you the strong person you are. I am happy to get to know you through her.