Her name was Annie.
She met me at the hand basin, scrubbing the outside world away.
“I have a surprise for you”, she said as we walked towards the humidicrib.
“You grew them well, you should be so proud of the job you did”.
I looked into her world and saw that the little girl was breathing on her own.
For the first time since their beginning.
It had been so hard to come back to the place where William had been.
The nurses still remembered us, their hearts as raw as ours and they had been guarded as we watched our new beings silently.
Hoping for a miracle this time.
I could not look to my boy without seeing his brother.
Three days into the week before I was able to cast a glance towards his crib and see Noah for the sweet baby he was but this day I could see that the girl might make it.
This nurse, who I had not met before but who knew of our history, this gentle woman who could palpate my pain with deft, kind hands, guided mine into the circular windows and onto my baby girl.
“She is strong. A fighter.”
I held the baby to my skin that day and felt her breathe and relax against my heart and, I think, I lost mine to that tiny soul right then and there.
My little fighter.
Tonight she fights the IVIG sweats and a high temp but she didn’t fight the cannula.
She was brave.
All the nurses and the doctors said so.
I never saw Annie again but tonight as I watch over Ivy, I remember her words and I hold them close to me.