Eight: Infinity Turned Sideways.

(This month, Nicole celebrated her eighth birthday, and I discovered that the heart is a helix.  I learned this when a friend passed on a beautiful blog entry by Lara Maaske called Untying The Knot: Your Heart Is Actually A Spiral  A medical illustrator, she describes both graphically and verbally, the helical structure of the heart.  I love the idea that our hearts contain this primal, universal shape that appears in so many places within our universe.  It is both a reassuring and a beautiful theory, and concurs with what Nicole has taught us about the spiraling nature of love and growth throughout her first eight years on this earth.)

In the development of the human embryo, the heart begins as a simple cardiac tube, alight with pure and simple potential.

simple tubebd

As the fetus grows, so does this tube.

 It lengthens and begins to twist and turn, sprouting sacs which become atria and transforming grooves into ventricles.

spriral bd

 Eventually, a perfect heart is formed from this spiraling helix.

There is not a day that goes by that we don’t thank our lucky stars that this  beautiful heart

has coiled herself  into our spot on this spiral  galaxy as she seeks her place in the universe.


Twisting, spiraling, delivering pure unadulterated oxygen to all of her surroundings.  Like a helix, this sweetest of  hearts keeps on expanding and turning and settling into our hearts, and before you know it, eight years have passed, and we can’t imagine life existed before her.



Two adjacent spirals, one little blip of a year.

Eight keeps us on our toes.

Infinity turned sideways.

Spinning with color and sugar and unbounded energy.

eight spirals

We will do our best to guide her around eight,


but we know that she will follow where her own heart’s helix may take her.


She holds her own map.


Eight ceaselessly wakes us up early,


and eight never seems to stop singing.


Eight can sting like a bee,


and groom like the gentlest of coiffeurs.


Eight is a curious spy


and a loyal friend.


Eight takes whatever light that comes her way and reflects it right back at us

candle bp

with brightness and color that make us jump with joy.


Eight has discovered the joy of reading alone,


and together.


Eight has taught us so much, not the least of which is:

Do not underestimate eight.


After all,

the only difference between eight and eighty

8 and 80

is a zero.



We will cherish each moment that eight gives to us,


because, before we know it, eight will be flying off


in search of



searching inthe shadows

6 thoughts on “Eight: Infinity Turned Sideways.

  1. Is there a new, stronger word for love? If there were I would use it to describe how I feel about this! Happy Birthday sweet Nicole, it is so great to be eight!

  2. happy birthday nicole! you are such a blessing to your family, i can see the love coming to you and back to them. it’s a joy to witness.
    much love to you all, xoxo nancy

  3. Great blog El! Happy Birthday Nicole! Glad to hear you guys had a nice visit with Grammy and John. Italy was great – if you haven’t yet, you should go! Ed


  4. absolutely beautiful!!!! Congratulations to all, ellen you do great work!

    love always,

    Diana Pieters-Gonzalez , Marlon, David and Kyra

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