Summer Rain

Saw her. My new niece: Summer Rain. Tiny, in the NICU. What exactly does that abbreviation mean? Some kind of shorthand. Maybe neo-natal intensive care unit? The NICU. Pronounced nick you. Oh, and it does.

Dictionary.com defines nick thus...

1. a small notch, groove, chip, or the like, cut into or existing in something.
2. a hollow place produced in an edge or surface, as of a dish, by breaking, chipping, or the like: I didn't notice those tiny nicks in the vase when I bought it.
3. a small dent or wound.
4. a small groove on one side of the shank of a printing type, serving as a guide in setting or to distinguish different types.
5. Biochemistry. a break in one strand of a double-stranded DNA or RNA molecule.
6. British Slang. prison.
7. to cut into or through: I nicked my chin while shaving.
8. to hit or injure slightly.
9. to make a nick or nicks in (something); notch, groove, or chip.
10. to record by means of a notch or notches.
11. to incise certain tendons at the root of (a horse's tail) to give it a higher carrying position; make an incision under the tail of (a horse).
12. to hit, guess, catch, etc., exactly.
13. Slang. to trick, cheat, or defraud: How much did they nick you for that suit?
14. British Slang.
a. to arrest (a criminal or suspect).
b. to capture; nab.
c. to steal: Someone nicked her pocketbook on the bus.
15. in the nick of time, at the right or vital moment, usually at the last possible moment: The fire engines arrived in the nick of time.

Looking at sweet Summer Rain in that sterile bassinet, her heart needing a surgeon's knife, belly riddled with staph infection, on the mend from meningitis, bruised and needle-pricked, frail, breathing quickly, turning eyes towards mama's voice, falling asleep under mama's loving fingers. I touch her soft head.

And some kind of notch opens up in me, a hollow place, a soul wound that feels like it goes all the way down to my DNA. I am captured, stolen, in prison, tricked (I thought I was strong; now I see the truth). Will this incision of grief give me a higher carrying position? Will it guide someone in need? Is it in the nick of time?

God, carry these infirmities. By your wounds, make us whole.

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Blogger Joelle said...

"By your wounds, make us whole." Such a comforting prayer. My heart aches for the new-to-suffering-life of Summer Rain. What a small body to hold so much pain. And what a miniscule God to identify so completely with her ouches. I'm glad He's in that bassinet. And with you. All at the same time....

Blogger SuzyQ said...

I just felt my heart breaking as I read through this list of definitions for what seems to be such a small little word. Yet a word that can cause so much pain.
I pray for your sweet darling niece and all those precious new little lives there with her.
Her name is just beautiful too.


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