It was a sunny day. A Friday, to be exact. One of those days that you wish you could spend in one of London's vast, green parks, just laying on your back and looking up at that endless blue sky. Instead, we were pulling through a particularly long day at work, clouded in the boozy remains of yesterday's office party, scoffing down peanut butter toast and willing the work week to end. But for me, this was a very special day.
I'd gotten the news the night before. My sister Sofie and her husband had been rushed off to the maternity ward at 3am and I was hoping it was anything but a false alarm. I was ready for this new chapter for all of us, even if I was in another country.
When I got the news, sitting outside the pub with my teammates at lunch, an unfamiliar feeling washed over me. My phone beeped with a message from my mum who had sent me a photo of a tiny face that I'd never seen before. Her eyes were huge and blue. Her tiny little ears were the cutest thing I'd ever seen. But that heart-gripping mix of overwhelming emotion and excitement was more than mere tenderness; it was the realisation of another identity being added to my person. I was now an aunt.
As the days passed, being far away hurt more and more, but the effervescent feeling of anticipation made me giddy: soon I'd see her for the first time. Hold her, if my sister trusted me enough! In a few short weeks, days, hours I'd see my niece for the first time.
I don't think I've ever seen my sister beam like this before. Watching her beautiful family, her handsome husband, their huge, adorable boxer who can only be described as a massive puppy, and this other little brand new person in her arms, I felt so proud I could barely contain it. Just observing them was happiness.
Holding Elise for the first time was heartbreakingly emotional. I know I wouldn't always be around. The thought keeps stinging even now as I write this. But at the same time, I can't wait to come back to Stockholm and watch her grow, slowly but surely, into the beautiful girl she will become. I can't wait to find out what she'll like and dislike, how her laughter will sound, how she'll take her first steps and say her first words. I can't wait to get to know her more and more. I can't wait to truly be her aunt.
I never thought it possible to love someone that you'd only met once this much.
Filed Under: life