At the age of 30, my life completely changed. The doctor threw this living ball of flesh on my chest after labouring for over 40 hours and pushing for about 1 hour. The first thing she did was grip her hands on my hospital gown. She made a sound of some sort, so I held her close in an awkward, clumsy sort of way. She was so slimy. I whispered, “I got you, I got you.” And I kissed her forehead gently before the nurse took her away and began to wipe her down.
Every birth story is different. But nobody ever forgets their first.
My firstborn is four years old today. I’m proud of the human that has blessed my life. I wish I could take the credit for it all but I can’t. In fact, I don’t think I can take credit for much. I mean I did the best I could. Sure, Google became my best friend. I have had the support from my family and loved ones but really she was really good to me.
I don’t think I’ll ever be able to tell her exactly how I feel but I will try. Maybe one day she’ll see this post and gain understanding as to why I am the way I am, as her mother. As a human being.
My daughter taught me to love consistently and unconditionally. Love isn’t always based on feelings and emotions but it grows and thickens over time. It doesn’t judge based on action. It doesn’t seek revenge or self validation. It gives me grace to grow and provides me with the understanding that I need to grow. I’m not perfect and God knows I’m trying. But with love that’s enough. The act of showing up authentically and truthfully has been the biggest lesson she’s taught me. I am free to be myself and to be better than what I “know” or to do better than “how I was raised”.
In the four years that I have known this little humans, I have grown to be bolder with my voice. I speak up for them. I model the strong woman I aspire for her to be and it’s scary. I influence with my presence, no longer hiding in the background waiting for a seat at the table. Some nights I pray to God that I’m doing the right thing. Then I’ll see her trying to guide her little sister through breathing exercises as a way to de-escalate a potential tantrum with me having to prompt her. Or she’ll look at me when I’m not feeling my best and say the words to get me through the day. Then there are the times she’ll talk back to me and use my own sass against me. Yet still, I love her so much.
My life changed when she taught me to seek the best possible option. I used to settle for whatever I got. She changed that real quick. God used her arrival to reveal to me my identity in Him and in life. My eyes were opened as soon as she took her breath.
I took bold leaps of faith that I would’ve others been too afraid to take because of her. I do things that are unconventional and uncomfortable because I can. And I can because of her.
It’s funny how much wisdom is packed in the mind of a person with just fours worth of life experience. Yet, I find her to be the most challenging and most caring, loving teacher I’ve ever had.
I’m grateful for my life changing event. She’s my life changing event.Happy birthday Mae!