There are certain dates and years that stick. We remember them, either because they hold a collective or personal importance. They make history.
April 9 is one such date. In Norway, this marks the anniversary of the single most traumatic collective event in our history. On April 9, 1940, Nazi-Germany invaded Norway and Denmark. Operation Weserübung managed to conquer most central Norwegian cities within 24 hours, while the Norwegian army continued fighting for two months before capitulating. Norway was subject to the brutal rule of the Nazi dictatorship for five years.
There is obviously a lot more to be said of both the invasion and the following occupation, and it definitely requires more than one blog post to do it justice. If inspiration every strikes, the historian in me might not be able to pass up the opportunity to make an attempt, some day. But not today. While April 9 is a part of Norwegian history, it is also a part of my personal history.
To me, the importance of April 9 changed last year. My sister was pregnant, and tests during the pregnancy had showed that the baby was not growing properly. The doctors prepared us that we could expect the worst, and the prospects for her surviving the birth at all seemed bleak. A premature C-section was scheduled, and thus my baby niece was born.
She did survive. Once born, there appeared to be nothing wrong with her. She was tiny - the smallest baby I have ever seen - but she otherwise seemed fine. From day one she ate well, and it did not take long before she started growing.
My niece is still small. Maybe she'll always be. But she is alive, she is healthy, and she is the cutest, happiest baby on the planet. Considering the prospects we faced prior to her birth, I don't care if she grows to ten times her current size, or if she doesn't grow at all. She is with us, and that is enough.
Happy first birthday, Live! You already made history.