Saturday, April 26, 2008

You're Forever My Girl

It is a beautiful spring morning, April 26, 2008. The trees along our block are all in bloom with white or pink buds, it’s very palatial. As if I am in another date and time. And I am.
Twenty-six years ago today, I was laboring with my third child. With a four year daughter and a not quite two year old son at home anxiously awaiting the birth of what we thought was “their baby brudder, Abner”. I had shared with my not quite two year old son that if the baby was a brother, his name would be Andrew, and if it was a sister, her name would be Abbie, how he came up with Abner I have no clue, but it’s been a funny part to our family story.

Having had the other two children by natural childbirth methods (breathe and push, and ENDURE!!!!) as was so popular in the 70’s and early 80’s, and having labored a long, LONG 30+ hours with each, I wasn’t surprised when my labor started off long and progressed slowly. Waiting at home until I thought she was practically hanging out, I arrived at the hospital, the day before my proposed due date, dilated only 2 cm.

2 cm. The dreaded words I longed to hear. I thought that I was ready to push for God’s sake, and I am, the minute this snotty nurse turns her back…but two- disappointing- cm. !!! After all the laboring I did at home? This is crazy!

But labor did progress, and soon I was delivering (on my due date I might add, the first and probably only time that I was ON TIME!). I so wanted to watch this time, with my glasses on so I could see, trying not to scrinch my eyes as I pushed and panted, trying to keep them wide open. Better for viewing.

As you crowned, the doctor told me about seeing your hair, and soon they adjusted the large mirror so that I could see your face. Your lightly colored hair all slick and sticking up, your perfectly round head (like Charlie Brown!) coming through the canal that was all mine, with your EYES wide OPEN! You were trying to focus on the world, even before the rest of your tiny little body was through it's warm little cocoon. I still didn’t know if you were an Abner or an Abbie.

And then I knew. You popped into this world, very little pain, no need for episiotomy, thank you very much, eyes wide open and when they wrapped you and put you in the Isolette next to me. You, amazed them all by reaching around for the edge of the blanket and tucking it into your palm, sucked your thumb. You were our Abbie girl.

And that’s how you have lived your life ever since. Eyes wide open, searching for adventure. Until you were three you were so content to explore just within the family and home. As a baby, you never fussed alot. Hell, you slept through the night the night that we brought you home from the hospital, so not wanting to intrude yourself. And like so many other babies with older brothers and sister, you endured calmly all the poking of their tiny fingers into your eyes and cheeks, as they tried to haul you around.

These are all familiar stories to you, I’ve repeated them over the years (but not to the readers…ok, the two maybe that read! How DO you get readers anyway?) You grew up, and left the nest. Oh, my baby, did you have to go so far away? Off to Colorado. We speak almost every day. But I can’t share with you all the day to day things that I share with Sarah. I’ll miss you today, as I celebrate, deep within my heart, my special day with you.
Happy Birthday Bean. I love you, Mom

“And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
Taken without permission from “The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran”


Anonymous said...

What a sweet birthday post! Happy Birthday to your dear daughter, and to you, as all mothers should celebrate on their kids' birthdays. :)

Brandi said...

Jackee, I love to read your post. While I am reading it I feel as if I am almost there with you in that moment. You are a great writer. Keep on!!!
HAPPY B- Day to Abbie

Carbon Based said...

I always loved the 2nd part:

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let our bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

Robin said...

What a wonderful post. Happy birthday to your grown-up baby girl!

Tessie said...

I LOVE THAT PICTURE! Oh how sweet.

Also, your children are GROWN and that must be SO AWESOME. Heh.

JackeeG4glamorous said...

I love that they are grown, but I miss them. For all of you that are young and just starting with your children, I LOVE hearing how you are independent from your "mommyness" It wasn't always like that for women, we kinda got lost in raising the kids. Cool picture of 80's glasses and hair wings huh? Yeah, the pictures are sometimes hard to look at!