January 21, 2010

Sweet Indie

Today marks the 10th birthday of the second youngest of our ten nieces.

Happy Birthday India!

When India was a baby, my sister Cherise lived in Seaside, a northern Oregon coastal town. My aunt and uncle and a handful of cousins also lived there. One night as I was getting ready for bed, my aunt called and said, "Honey, I have some bad news. Cherise had a surfing accident and is in the hospital." Evidently, (in what must have been a spectacular wipe out) the board's fin came down on top of Cherise's foot and sliced through her wet suit bootie. By the time she got out of the surf, blood was pumping out the wound. An infection set in and spread up her calf. My aunt, a nurse, said it wasn't good.

My mom was in Michigan visiting my older sister. By the time I called there, it was after midnight eastern time. I told her I was driving to Seaside in a few hours; I had been tapped to take care of the children while Cherise was in the hospital. Me: the childless one.

India was about 7 months old at the time. I think the hardest thing for my sister was having to abruptly stop nursing her baby due to all the medication the doctors were forcing into her body to fight the infection.

And I was left taking care of small children I barely knew while my sister was hospitalized fighting a nasty infection. But a bond was formed that week in my semi-desperate care giving frenzy. Sweet Indie has a special place in my heart.

Cherise and her girls
summer 2009


willow said...

Aww. She was lucky to have her sweet Aunty Charmaine to watch over her!

Happy Birthday, India!

(love that name)

Golden West said...

I've loved the name "India" since I first read "Gone With The Wind".

She looks like a sweetheart!

Sweet Repose said...

Happy birthday India...wish I had a Sister...lil' brothers are just not the same!

shibori girl said...

A very happy birthday wish to a sweet girl.

It's great that you had that opportunity to care for the children to forge that bond. A terrible accident for sure, but something wonderful came from it.

Karine said...

Cherise looks like a surfer! Happy birthday to your niece. We are getting rain AND snow now. Wow.

Helen said...

Happy Birthday Miss India! There are many people looking at your sweet face today.

Victoria said...

wow, what a story... thank goodness for happy endings! happy birthday india!

Anonymous said...

Heartbreaker there in just a few short years. Happy Birthday to India!

T.Allen-Mercado said...

She's beautiful, they all are. I hope her birthday was great! And you, talk about a crash course in childcare!

fly tie said...

beautiful story and photo. kudos to you for being a loving and concerned aunt and accepting that role.