A Life Changing Day

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By: Brittani Sahm
Sports Information Assistant

Claire Marie Sotherdon, born October 18, 2012

Today is a great day. A life-changing day for my family as my younger sister gave birth to her first child, making me an aunt AND a godmother. There is nothing more exciting in this world than a new life and my niece, Claire Marie, has made this day an unforgettable one.

Claire was born at 12:55 am eastern time, but my sister, Chelsea, lives in Arizona, so technically her daughter was born on October 18 at 9:55 pm. A healthy 7 lbs. 6oz. fit into 19.5 inches. Unfortunately, I was sound asleep when I got the text at 2:02 am revealing the great news that I was officially an aunt. Around 5:15 am, I checked my phone in a half-asleep state of mind, read the great news (with the cute picture attached) and instantly wanted to jump out of my bed and tell everyone I knew about the fantastic news. The easiest way to get information out nowadays is to post it on Facebook, and this is exactly what I did.

I was so excited about the idea that we have a new baby girl in our family that I could barely fall back asleep. I wanted to hop on a plane to Arizona and meet the beautiful girl today, but that was not an option. Luckily for Chelsea and her husband, my dad and step-mom conveniently planned a trip to visit them right around the due date. It worked out perfectly and now they have lots of time to spend with Claire and the new family.

The most difficult thing about this pregnancy was that Chelsea was so far away from our entire family. Her husband is in the Air Force and he is based in Tucson, the main reason why they live 30-plus hours southwest of New York where both of them are from.

Chelsea’s wedding

Even before we found out about the pregnancy, the past year has been quite the journey for our family. Chelsea got married on October 1, 2011 and moved to Tucson soon afterwards. We weren’t able to see her again until the summertime because of her husband’s military duties. It was perfect timing for me. I was able to take my vacation the week she was in New York and that was when I was asked to be the godmother. I was so happy I cried right in the middle of the baby shower. I tend to get a little emotional sometimes. I will gladly accept happy tears whenever appropriate though.

I wish I could have been there for Chelsea more throughout the pregnancy, but that is something we have all accepted now that we live in different areas of the country. The best part about all of this is that I feel even closer to my family now that Claire is here. I’ll be able to see pictures of her growing and the joy that a new child brings to the entire family. Oh, and I can’t forget about spoiling her! I won’t claim to understand the feeling pregnancy brings, but I do now understand how one little life can change all of us forever.

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