Sometime ago, my neighbour announced at a board meeting that "Hey, I'm going to be the youngest grandfather in this co-op!" Now, I'm not sure that I would be telling everyone with glee in my voice that my 17 year old daughter is pregnant and that at 35 and 36, my spouse and I would in fact be the youngest grandparents in the neighbourhood. For some strange reason, I would not want my daughter to repeat the past. I'd like to see her go to university, to travel, to own her own home and then have her children. But that's just me. Apparently, they were quite thrilled to see their daughter pregnant. And while I think it's great that they are supporting her, I was amazed that he was literally jumping for joy.
A couple of months later we are ready to kick him off the board due to the fact that he is, quite frankly, a useless tit. He didn't show up to the meeting, and was called. He came over, took great offense at us saying he has not done a thing while I am currently running two committees (due to the fact that we have another useless tit on our board.) He says "I'll leave the board for personal reasons. We have been dealing with three deaths in my family in the last few months." He proceeds to tell us that his daughter's baby, due at the end of May, has anencephaly and is expected to die shortly after birth. She was given the option of having labour induced at that point (around 5 months) or waiting until she was full term. She chose to wait.
I do not know this girl, in almost 6 years of living directly across the street from them, I have seen her a grand total of once. But, do I ever admire her decision. I could not carry a baby I knew was going to die for another 3 or 4 months. I would fall apart everytime someone asked me when the baby was due, what I was having, have you picked your names, whatever. That, at 17, she is strong enough to do so is quite amazing to me.
And it makes me grateful that my little girl is, thus far, healthy.
*Note: While I call him a useless tit, I really do like this fella, he is great with the neighbourhood kids, showing them how to do fancy soccer moves and whatnot. He was just to busy to be on our board. You know, not that the rest of us aren't. But still, a nice guy. Though I would hope he never comes across this blog!