Saturday, February 24, 2007
I had the dream again. It's the dream where I've lost my baby and I'm searching between all the cars in the parking lot trying to find her. People are helping me, but I'm panicked and I can't find her anywhere. Then I see Marta helping me search. That's when I realize it's only a dream. Marta's the baby I'm searching for, and I suddenly remember she's not lost, she's just grown up! It's the only repetitive dream I've ever had, and I started having it when two of my daughters got married within a few weeks of each other. At one of their bridal showers a friend pointed out the meaning: I was losing my babies!!
I think the dream happens whenever I rediscover what awesome people my babies have become. Yesterday I went to lunch with Marta and she blows me away! She's 25, and married to Dan who is in law school. He studies like crazy and has a part time job in another city, but she never complains about being on her own most of the time. She has 3 jobs, plus her own card design company. She works from 8 am until 6 or 7pm, rides the bus home in the dark, and then works for clients that are spread coast to coast. In between all that she hosts showers and luncheons, dinners and open houses, with darling decor, favors and handmade invitations. She's an awesome cook and brings cookies and treats to work regularly. She teaches the 5-year-olds every Sunday at church, is on the Activities Committee planning parties for 300 people, visit teaches 4 college girls with crazy schedules, and she's a designated invitation maker for Enrichment Night.
She loves to make personalized cards, books (which she binds herself) and collages. She surprised Dee with one using photos of antique cars. Not just any antique cars...the exact ones he loves. She searches dictionaries and quote books for very individual words, and creates unique gifts representing the person she's honoring. Her work has been displayed in art shows and libraries, and she's been honored for her designs. She doesn't spend a lot of money, but she spends hours and hours, and her creations are priceless.
Marta has 28 nieces and nephews of various ages who she dotes on. She buys them presents, sends cards, babysits...the older ones are like the younger brothers and sisters she never had. She advises them on dates, prom dresses, colleges, and even drove all the way to California with an 18-year-old nephew. She loves and visits Dan's grandparents, taking treats and going on outings with them. She's an awesome, attentive daughter and sister to her family and her in-laws, starting many traditions and supporting the old ones. She has many friends, and has gained lots more by marrying Dan; she emails and blogs creatively to keep in touch and build these friendships.
Her major role is being a wife. She's been married for over 5 years, and yet they act like newlyweds. She adores her husband (who is adorable) and tries to be available for fun whenever he is. She secretly saved money so they could get a new car, and surprised Dan with the means to move to a new state when a great opportunity came up. She is positive and upbeat, creative and funny, organized and efficient and unselfish beyond belief.
I realized yesterday that she literally will give the shirt off her back. She tried on a shirt she really liked, but it was $60 and she couldn't afford it. She makes about $20 an hour. Three hours of work would buy the shirt. I know she's given at least 3 hours of her time recently, unpaid, to help with invitations for a church function. This is the exact kind of work she would otherwise be paid for! I know from experience that helping someone is much more time consuming and tedious than just doing the work at your own speed, yet she patiently worked with the person, borrowing time from her marriage, her other projects, and money from her budget. Her generosity is her gift to others.
When Marta was little she had an imaginary friend named "Gnome." He went everywhere with her, and we always saved a seat for him at any event. She carefully lifted him onto his seat, and made sure he was comfortable, and never forgot to include him. It seems she was practicing for real life. If she was that nice to an imaginary friend, you can imagine what she's like with her real ones. I'm so glad she's one of mine!! My dreams came true. I didn't lose a baby, I gained a friend.