So, a man that I love dearly rang me this week to say “Great blog, well written, it evokes emotion, but captures a lot factually, however, it is repetitive and way too long”.  Seemingly a journalist submitted a great article once and said, “Sorry it is so long, I did not have time to do a short one”.  Short is definitely harder and, for me, nearly impossible.

My blogs are therapy for my brain if I feel overloaded, as I did last week, so thank you all for the bananas, this one is shorter John 😊!

This week, a bright light broke through the grey clouds that I felt over my head and a ray of magnificent sunshine shone down on our family.  A little baby was born, our magnificent grandchild with new life, new hope and big black wise eyes like his mother’s, gazing up at her with all his might.  Little baby Tom changed our world this week.  In fact, not just baby Tom. 

As you know, a big part of my life is in Russia.  Well, we had a birth there also.  Six weeks early, a tiny mite wrapped up in wires and feeding tubes and a distraught Mama with no one in her life.  She is one of the children we worked with from Hortolova orphanage over the past two decades.  A beautiful girl, but very alone.

One baby will have a huge family, adored, spoiled, loved, the best education, holidays, college, jobs, every privilege possible, uncles, aunts, grandparents and great grandparents, all doting.  One baby will have a vastly different life, both born in the same 24 hours, but worlds apart. 

I watched our own Irish team love bomb our young, lost, Russian Mama yesterday, as she was in desperate pain following her caesarean.  My darling friend Andrei Malakhov, a giant celebrity in Russia, called her on her phone to tell her he knew she was going to be a great Mama, a kind gesture to try to stop her tears.  He never lets me down. 

Both mothers are in very different situations, one with a beautiful new home set up with all the equipment needed for their baby, a loving husband and adoring daddy, both doing skin to skin, both gazing, besotted, singing and cooing to their new-born angel. 

The other mother, alone in a maternity house, weeping as she cannot get to her little mite in his wires, no skin to skin, no family on the phone, no cooing.  Up to only a month ago, no room to live in.

Both little boys will be in my daily life now.  Our Irish team will form a family for the little one in Russia as best we can, assisted by our lovely Russian staff of two.

I could not hold my grandchild or even see him, due to COVID rules, but today we get to meet him.  We have held our breath for this moment, traumatised at the idea of our daughter giving birth with the COVID factor.  Today is the day my heart will be stolen by a 7lb 3-ounce bundle with big black eyes.  Today I can smell his skin.

“Keep it short” John says.

Well here is this week’s word.  Love.  Overwhelming love has replaced the bananas and solpadeine and no better cure.

No matter what our little boy in Russia has or does not have, he still has more than many.  His Mama loves him and she will do all she can to raise him the best way possible.  Poverty will be a big factor, lack of family support and loneliness will be another, but both little boys already share one thing, the most important thing there is, the love of a magnificent, adoring, beautiful Mother.  Who needs anything else really?  That is the most important thing that both boys can have and no matter what their circumstances, they are blessed with this adoring, unconditional love.

I spent last night swamped with texts from a girl who I lost touch with 12 years ago, an orphan.  She messaged me on Instagram to thank us for being the only kindness in her life when she was young.  She wishes she were back in the orphanage, as it was the only happiness she ever knew.  She told me this morning, (as she is still texting endlessly), that her father is a drunk and her mother never loved her or her little brother, who is now in jail, no one ever really loved them.  She remembered the smell of my perfume (I have worn Eternity for decades).  She remembered Mairtin’s guitar, she remembered our volunteers, she remembered the feeling of joy, safety and love back then.  We exchanged messages all night as she poured out hours of heartache.

One person loving you all your life is all you need.  That is it.  The rest is a bonus.

There are two little ones bringing beams of sunshine to our lives today, new life, new energy, hopefully cleverer than us mess makers, both in two very different worlds, but they share one major thing on this day today, the love of their Mama. 

As a person who has witnessed 21 years behind orphanage walls, that is something I saw so many beautiful children crave, weep and search for, they still do.  There is little recovery if no one ever loved you. 

Two magnificent lucky boys with two magnificent, caring, loving mothers.  A new day has dawned for us all, there are new beams of brightness in the dark sky. 

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