I've lived a very blessed life, but I do know what it's like to miss someone...
My first memory of this was missing my friends, school, and familiarity as a grade child when our family moved to a new home. I, like many people, have re-experienced this emotion as in varying degrees as different stages of my life have occurred (graduations, job changes, break-ups, moving, whatever).
I missed everything familiar to me (people, food, language, smells, everything!) while living with my host family as I volunteered in Taiwan for 6 months.
I missed my family, friends, and the guy I loved (now my husband) for 18 months while living in Germany while serving a full-time mission for our church...and with just 3 phone calls home that entire time. (And ironically now I still miss Germany)
I missed my family and friends during the years that we lived out of state in Iowa during schooling as we not only went through the struggles associated with medical schooling and life's challenges in general (apartment burning down, home robbery, surgeries, car accident, job/money struggles, etc), but also endured the physical and emotional struggles of infertility and the roller coaster of adoption without having them nearby.
I still miss our dear friends that were there for us through those toughest times in our lives in Iowa while away from family. They were our family there and we miss them now!
I missed the support of family and friends (especially my mom) while living in Arizona dealing with pregnancy complications, scares, and severe sickness.
I miss my grandpa quite often (who has passed away) who was such an integral part of my life and growing up years.
I've missed lesser things too, like the pre-baby body I used to have or having more time for myself (both things happily traded for the blessing of being a mom, but still...)
So, that being established, this is the new emotion that clicked with me today...I know what it is like to miss someone, or something. To know someone closely and then be away from them. To have experiences and connection with another person and then to be away from that.
Today I found myself thinking about our baby girl that we're waiting for. I recognized that heavy feeling in my heart, that feeling of unwhole-ness or of longing. The only emotion or experience from my life that I can tie those feelings to is that of missing someone. Those times when I have truly felt the unwanted separation of missing someone I care dearly about. And I realized...I miss her. Just typing that makes me feel so emotional.
The obviously strange/new thing about the emotion I'm feeling is that I haven't even met her yet. How can I miss someone who I haven't even met yet?...and yet she already feels so much a part of my heart. It is indeed unique to feel a deep connection to someone that you don't even know yet. Or perhaps therein lies the discrepancy. Maybe I do know her already, but I just don't remember. I believe just as deeply in a pre-mortal existence as I do in an afterlife. Maybe I do already know this sweet little girl, and as our journey to bring her home slowly brings us closer to her then perhaps my spirit cries out in longing for that familiarity and bond that my mind simply can't remember. I feel connected to her in the same way I feel connected to other people in my life that I care deeply about.
Whether I did indeed know this little person before this life...or if perhaps my mind, or the English language, simply lacks the ability to discern this unique emotion from that of "missing" someone...what I do know is that I long for her. So that is my realization for today. I miss someone fiercely that in this life I certainly haven't met yet.