As most of you know Phoenix wasn’t born with ten fingers and toes. She was born with little rosebud hands and her little toes were one. I remember, at her birth, Luke telling me that there was some webbing on her fingers and toes before he showed her to me. In my 20 hours in labor and a C-section drug induced stupor I asked “Like a ducks?” “No, not quite.” was the reply and he showed me her hands. Before, I could even respond Luke said, “it feels like all ten fingers and there”. He also said, “all her toes are together, but there are ten – I counted”. No fingers and toes. We were assured that they could be fixed and one day she would have all ten fingers and toes. She did not. She had ten toes. But, only four fingers on each hand. We were going to have all ten this fall. She never let the fact that her hands were different hold her back. She could hold balls, bowls and toys with two hands. She learned to crawl on those little rosebud hands. Recently, I was told that she was the fastest cheerio eater in the nursery – and this was before her first release. That’s my girl! When she had her first release (her thumb and pinky were ‘free’) a whole new world was open to her. She could hold things with one hand! She could hold two things at once! Luke and I were always so proud of her accomplishments. We never realized how hard she had to work until we had Little Brother.
At Little Brother’s birth a pediatrician came in and proclaimed “Ten fingers and ten toes!!” He didn’t know our past, but it still stung. Little Brother grabs things without a second thought. With ease he can take a spoon from my hand and feed himself. I cried the first time he did that. I was happy that he could, but deeply sadden my the fact that Phoenix was nine months before she could use a spoon. Little Brother, effortlessly, will pass a toy from one hand to the other. He will grab a toy with each hand. Honestly, it took me a few weeks to get used to his fingers. There they were in all their baby finger glory. Pudgy little fists. Ten fingers that could stretch. Ten toes that curled.
I am used to his fingers now. But, I miss her hands. Her perfectly beautiful fingers – scars and all.
The other day I was thinking of her in Heaven. I don’t know what it is like there. Sometimes, I let myself get sentimental and think she is racing on clouds with her friends. Taking turns on the golden roads way too fast. Swimming in the Crystal Sea. Then the thought of her sitting on Jesus’ lap entered my mind. In this daydream, she was showing Him the scars on her fingers and He was showing her His. Could this really happen I don’t know. But, I like to think it could.