On Thursday I was given some of the happiest news of the week / month / year / decade: I became an aunt! Auntie Sarah. Wonderful, brilliant news, except that I live approximately five thousand miles away from the tiny bundle of love that is my nephew, and how, exactly is one supposed to get one's fill of baby snuggles when one is so far away? For now I'll make do with pictures of the sweet little boy and wait impatiently for our visit to England later this year.
"Can we go and see our cousin today?" My sons asked, hopping up and down, when I told them the news that the baby had arrived.
"No, I'm sorry, we cant. They live very far away from us. But we will see them this summer, when we go to England."
Times like this are inextricably joyous and difficult because I want desperately to go and be part of the joy that's happening there, and I can't.
Damn those thousands of miles!
But on a positive note, I'm so incredibly proud of my brother - a daddy for the first time, and his wife who is - I'm telling you - one of the most beautiful people inside and out that I've ever met. Again - damn those miles! But here we are, my brother and I, having our families thousands of miles from each other, but still finding ways to remain close, to support one another and to stay in touch as often as we can. And despite this I occasionally find myself cursing the distance between us and wishing I could wave a magic stick to make it shrink.
How about you, readers - how do you cope with living far away from family?