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On Becoming a First Time Aunt

When my sister called to tell me that she was pregnant, it was such an exciting time for our family. I talked to her throughout her pregnancy, answering questions, giving advice, and helping her with her registry. I couldn't get enough "bump" pictures, especially since my sister lives six hours away. While she was nervous about delivering and what life would be like after Charlotte arrived, I was counting down the days to meet my niece and watch my sister become a mom.

As her due date approached, my mom, my sister, and I texted each day asking about labor signs. She went ahead and scheduled an induction for a few days past her due date. While my mom planned to travel up the day before, I had a feeling that my sister would go into labor before that scheduled date. As I was cooking dinner, I looked down and saw my sister calling. In that moment, I knew. As I answered the phone and heard her breathing, my suspicions were confirmed. My sister said she had been having contractions for the past two hours, and they were ten minutes apart. I asked her if they were getting stronger and closer, and as she was about to answer, she had to stop and breathe. I told her to and call her doctor and check in. I immediately called my mom and told her my thoughts. My mom was in denial and didn't believe "this was it."

After a few more phone calls and quicker and stronger contractions, my sister and her husband headed to the hospital. After thirty minutes, we got a text that she was in labor, and they were admitting her! At that moment, my mom and I both knew there was no way we would be able to make the drive to Knoxville to be with my sister. We were both disappointed but knew that there was a chance that this might happen. We texted throughout the night, keeping tabs on the delivery and how my sister and baby Charlotte were doing.

At 5:43 a.m., my niece was born and I became an aunt. It was such a surreal and emotional moment.

Two days later we went to visit my sister and her husband to meet baby Charlotte. Nothing can prepare you for holding your sibling's baby for the first time. As I held precious Charlotte in my hands and looked at her beautiful face, as I smelled her sweet newborn head and wrapped my fingers around hers, it was if I was holding my own child. A million emotions filled my mind and heart as I began to think about all of the memories I would share with this baby.

My sister has had the experience of being an aunt to my two children. Now it was my turn to spoil her little one and love her like my own.

Spending those early days with my sister and her baby were magical and unforgettable. As I look at pictures of Charlotte now, she is already changing. She is turning into a baby and losing that newborness. I can't wait to watch her crawl and walk and eat puffs. I can't wait to take her to the zoo and the Children's Museum and Chick-fil-a. I can't wait to watch her play soccer, perform in a school play, or spend the night at our house with her cousins.

The bond that my sister and I share is now a million times stronger since she became a mom. Becoming an aunt is not what I thought it would be, it's a million times better!

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