The day she was born, I should have been waking up to the usual smell of breakfast cooking to prepare me for another long, boring Monday in Mrs. Baron’s fourth grade class. Instead, I woke up to my mom saying, “You need to hurry and get up. The baby is going to be born today and you have to walk to school.”--thank goodness we lived in town! Well, if that didn’t turn out to be the longest Monday in history!! After school, our neighbor met me at my house and said that my niece (yay!) had been born and her name was Crystal Dawn (boo!). I immediately started crying. When our neighbor asked me what was wrong I replied with all the innocence of a nine year old, “I thought they would name her Ruth if it was a girl!” (Remember, this was in the days before ultrasounds so no one knew the sex of the baby until it made its debut!) At that point, the neighbor lady consoled me with some vanilla wafers and a glass of milk. Then I was told I wouldn’t be able to see her until they brought her home—again, back in the days before kids were allowed to go visit in the hospitals, and new mothers and babies stayed in the hospital for an entire week. Thus, the longest week in history!
I remember blinking back tears when I got to hold her for the first time. From that day on, I wanted her with me always. When she was supposed to be napping, I would sneak into her room when no one was looking and wake her up so we could play. I didn’t grasp the necessity of babies napping until I had children of my own—now I understand why I got in so much trouble for waking her up—the adults needed her to nap!!
I remember blinking back tears as I heard she had committed her life to God as a young girl. I remember blinking back tears when she made her first cheerleading squad, and as I watched her graduate from high school with high distinction. I remember blinking back tears as she walked down the aisle as a beautiful bride, and again as she became a mother--all three times!
So, I am sure you are wondering why on earth would anyone who has caused me to shed so many tears be my role model. The answer is simple…all the tears I have shed for her have been tears of joy. Not once has she ever disappointed me or let me down. She has always been there for me, to cheer me on or calm me down when I’ve needed it. Her outlook on life is always positive. Because of her testimony and witnessing, I have regained my faith and trust in God in the last few years. She may be younger than me, but she is far wiser! She is leaving some major footprints in life, and I want to follow in them…Crystal Dawn McDonald Trower will forever be my role model!