Yesterday morning, as I was changing the sheets on our bed, I paused, as I always do, to read the note that I keep under my pillow. It's from my SIL in South Africa, and she sent it with a little fertility charm. With the other little cards and notes she has sent over the last few months, I treasure it, and often go back to read them when I'm feeling a bit low.
Then yesterday afternoon a card arrived from my SIL in the US. Being on the other side of the world and busy with her seven children, she hasn't always been quite up to speed on what's been going on with us, and there have been times when I've wondered if she and my brother even cared. I feel bad about typing that now, because in a few words in the card that she sent yesterday, she conveyed all the love and concern that you could hope for.
I always knew really that she was thinking of us and praying for us, and she has sent the occasional e-mail, but somehow this card made me cry, because what she said was so perfect, and it made me realise how much I had been underestimating - or perhaps underappreciating - her.
But right now I feel very blessed, because yesterday I had a great reminder of how lucky I am to have two SILs who, although far away, are among my best friends. And how even luckier I am that when we're not able to see each other face to face and give each other real hugs, they're both so good at sending me a hug in an envelope when I most need it.