2/24/2006

when love is enough


Two years ago today I was laying in a hospital waiting to have my first child. I remember that day just like it was yesterday. I remember the pain of the epidural being administered, the pain of the needle that they had to stick in my back 6 times before they got it in the right spot. I remember being anxious not because I was scared of going through labor, but because I was scared of being a mom. In all of my life I never was responsible for any other human being other than myself, and most times I failed that task miserably. When I found out I was pregnant I was sort of in shock. I had resolved myself to the fact that I'd probably never be a parent because I'd never found that person or at least didn't find them at the right time, to make me think I'd actually be so lucky to have a family of my own. Although the relationship I was in was a good one, it was still fairly new at only 7 months old. As you know, it's hard enough to make relationships work all by themselves, add in the extra pressure of bringing a life into this world and they become more complicated in a matter of minutes. As surprised as I was at being preggy, there was never a moment that I thought, "I can't do this." From the very second that I knew a life was growing inside of me, I loved that little piece of me I couldn't yet see. My significant other didn't feel the same, he was scared, confused, not ready to be a father and although he eventually came to support me, it was a very long road getting there. I was alone most of my pregnancy, not physically but emotionally. My parents supported me, my friends were awesome, but I was on the edge of this cliff teetering, not knowing whether I'd end up a single parent or not. I was successful in my career, I made enough money, I knew that somehow I'd get through it all. But it was hard, I felt abandoned. As much as I wanted love to be enough, in reality, it's never enough. I spent so much time talking to my child, telling that little being that I'd love them enough for two parents but I was scared that I'd fail. I'd come from a broken home and although my mother used to say the same thing to me, I'd always felt cheated that my father wasn't present in my life more. Would my child end up resenting me? Well, things worked out. The man I fell in love with eventually became the man I could depend on but there's always going to be this significant difference between us where it comes to our child. I loved her from the second I knew she existed, he loved her when he saw her come into this world.

So there I was 8 hours into labor and all I could think about was if this child would love me when she came into this world. A good friend of mine said something to me before my daughter was born that I will remember for the rest of my life. She said, "you've been searching for that love of your life and pretty soon, you are going to meet her." When I heard my child cry as she entered this world it was like I was hearing music for the first time. They placed her in my arms, her eyes were wide open and she just stared at me, as if she'd been waiting for me just as long as I'd been waiting for her. "I've been waiting so long to meet you," I said. I held her closer than I've ever held any human being on this earth and that missing piece of my heart that I'd been searching for ...well let's just say that for the first time, I was whole.

Happy birthday to my dear Alice Margaret. Sometimes I feel selfish because I want to keep you all to myself, live in your laughter, drown my sorrows in your smiles. I know that I must share you because this world needs another reason to believe that love really can be enough.

17 Comments:

  1. k o w said...
    Happy Birthday
    Tab said...
    Happy Birthday to your baby
    and Happy Birthing Day
    to you ,the proud Mama :)
    Thanks for sharing
    ps.I love the knitted baby outfit!
    sirreene said...
    It gets even more amazing with the years.
    kimmyk said...
    Isn't it amazing how you can recall every second of your childs birth...but I'll tell ya I can't remember what I ate for dinner two nights ago.

    It's crazy how fast they grow up-and they change ...daily!

    My son will be 14 in a few weeks and I can remember the clothes I was wearing when my water broke and what I was eating that night for dinner.....ahhhh memories!
    DayByDay4-2Day said...
    Ahhh happy birthday little one!
    Caterpillar said...
    I don't often cry from just reading things, but this post did the job - reading about your loneliness and then about the miracle of birth and the love you felt...things like that get to me.

    And she was such an adorable newborn! Happy Birthday Alice!
    Alexis said...
    What a beautiful share! Thank you! Your daughter is SO loved and lucky to have you as a mom!
    e.e. said...
    wow.... I concur with cat...reading about the emotions you have gone though and the sharing of it to all of us is so sweet. Thanks.
    It gives me hope. There are miracles that happen, every day.
    And tiny angels that bring them.
    My best.
    Mellissa said...
    What a beautiful post. I read and re-read it and felt so much in my heart.

    I hope one day to discover this love that you have!

    Birthday hugs to your sweet one!

    Ladybug
    Lori said...
    What a beautiful little girl and how fortunate she is to have you for her mother.

    It really does get better, too. My "baby girl" will be 17 this summer and the years have flown by so quickly. She and her brother are even more precious than the day they were born.

    Happy Birthday to your darling baby.
    NML said...
    That was beautiful and it brought a tear to my eye. Happy birthday to Alice Margaret x
    WDKY said...
    Happy Birthday from me too. What a lovely, and interesting, post... I'm not entirely sure that a father can't love his child as deeply and profoundly as a mother, but I also acknowledge the difference in terms of that biological bonding that takes place. Maybe neither can understand the other's feelings, in truth, and what matters is that the love is there from both.

    Alice Margeret is beautiful, that's for sure!
    Rex said...
    Great post and thanks for sharing Alice's birthday with us. It reminded me of a very similar day that happened for me 20 years and two monthe ago....and the memories are just as vivd as the day I met the love of my life......
    Shannon said...
    oooh happy late b-ay alice.... She is soooo beautiful

    you and me have alot in common

    I went through the same thing prego and my Bayleigh is now 7 and wow being a single parent (not now since I just married the man of my dreams not my fathers daughter)
    Da Gal said...
    You are such a beautiful person - and an amazing storyteller. I have missed you so much. Thank you for sharing this story - I wish I was as courageous as you were.

    Thanks for the inspiration!!!

    And... I'm back so come on over and visit when you have a chance and then you can update your link. I made a new site and for lots of reasons am NOT linking it to/from my old site.

    Take care - I've missed you!!!
    Grace said...
    This is an absolutely beautiful post. I've always wanted to be a mom. I tell hubby that a part of me is missing with out a child - without a family. Thank you for sharing your experience of love with us for your daughter. She is absolutely beautiful.
    Spitfire said...
    I'm sorry I'm late, Baby A! Happy Birthday! I'm so glad you could bring your mama so much happiness and love!

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