16 Days


A Little Tin of Chocolate

I began writing this blog in 2008, fresh after a breakup from a very complicated relationship, and filled with excitement because I was about to embark on a solo vacation to Paris. Life felt pretty huge and terrifying then. I was raw with emotion, and apprehensive about what the future held for me. When I returned from my trip, I would have no place to live, and I’d be facing the realities of being single and thirty-something.

I drank Paris in, and fell deeply in love with a city that I always suspected would have a special place in my heart. Because I was on a very tight budget, I allowed myself only a few token souvenirs, mostly purchased at a well-stocked supermarket and the Parisian equivalent of Winners. One of these mementos was a tin of French drinking chocolate, so I could enjoy the delicious little ritual I had created for myself each afternoon no matter where I ended up back home in Canada.

When my new family and I combined our households, the chocolate tin came with me. I hadn’t expected the chocolate to survive, but the tin was pretty so I imagined we could use it for storage in our kitchen. French chocolate is resilient though, and to my amazement still tastes as good as it did when I first bought it almost five years ago.

On Tuesday night, A and Daddy made us a post-dinner hot chocolate and marshmallow nightcap, and all five of us sat around the table enjoying it together. As I gazed at the faces of these beautiful girls who have been one of the greatest gifts of my life thus far, I was suddenly overcome with emotion. Strolling through the aisles of that Parisian grocery store, trying to choose just the right thing to bring home, I had resigned myself to believing that children and family were a long, long way off and perhaps something that were not meant for me in Schnooville. But now I sat surrounded by my family, (a family I have chosen against all odds, and a family who freely chose me despite all of my flaws), drinking that Parisian chocolate and ready to burst with another brand new life who gets to go through each day with these wonderful people. I feel no fear about this huge milestone because my heart believes I am exactly where I should be, with the people I need most in my life.

Look defeat in the eye and love yourself even harder. Tell disappointment that you deserve better. Treat your broken heart to vacations and decadent chocolate and trust that somehow, probably in the most unpredictable way, it will all work out. If you believe that you are lovable, the love you crave will find you.

H & A Enjoy Some Tummy Time:

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3 thoughts on “16 Days

  1. OMG….I love how you can take me with you on your voyage through life by the amazing way you share your words and experiences. You have a true talent and I admire you for being able to share your thoughts, experiences and feelings so freely. It brings tears to my eyes watching and listening to those two precious little girls being able to share and express their thoughts and feelings so freely. I can’t wait to meet the newest addition and feel that he will be so blessed to be part of this great family. Love you all. Auntie Gigi

  2. This is just beautiful Catherine. H & A are so precious. Little N is going to be so lucky to have two beautiful Moms, a handsome Dad and two beautiful caring sisters.

    Love,

    Mom

  3. I’m a month behind on my blog reading, so I’m just getting to this now.

    Reading your last paragraph, I was suddenly crying in great, gasping sobs. It is exactly what I need to read, and internalize, as I am navigating my own broken-heartedness and unpredictable life.

    Thank you.

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