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Thursday, May 7, 2009

Maybe I do worry a tad too much.

Moments of motherhood. The grand. The minute. The scary. The heart-bursting joyful. The frustrating. The rewarding. The familiar. The alien. The lunacy. The tender. And the list goes on and on.  Here at MWOB, it's a week of reflection surrounding the infinite moments of being a mommy. And here's Em, a woman and mother and writer whom I totally and utterly respect.  

Written by Em

While pregnant with my first son, I read everything I could find concerning babies. I wanted to be ├╝ber prepared.

Let's all take a break for a good chuckle.

There was, however, one question for which I could never locate the answer. A topic that was so dark and scary that no book would broach the subject. Childbirth is supposed to be transformational, right? Moonbeams and rainbows? Unicorns and Care Bears? No matter what hell your body goes through, once that child is here, you lock eyes, connect on a level you never knew existed, and forget the world because you will fall. in. love.

Right?!

But what if I didn't? What if he didn't? I don't just hand my heart to anyone, and I'm one difficult chick to get to know, this could be disastrous.

The test came with my waters breaking 10 days early, a petocin-induced labor, two hours of pushing, and then a late-night emergency c-section. I was so doped up that I chose the middle name without even remembering - seriously. "Bonding" was the last thing on anyone's mind, until the next morning when the nurse wheeled our son into the room.

And then left.

Hubs and I just looked at each other.

What are we supposed to do with him now?!

We managed, but I didn't feel like a "Mother." He was cute and wrinkly and serious and looked like his father - all good things for sure - but where was the thunderbolt?

Three days later we were home. The house was eerily quiet. Hubs gathered Oldest out of his carrier, and we wandered into our bedroom to enjoy the moment. I sat down on the edge of the bed and took in the view of the love of my life holding our newest love of our lives.

I then proceeded to bawl, completely overcome with emotions - I mean like the Grinch-whose-heart-grew-three-sizes kind of painful realization that this tiny creature, this defenseless angel, would die if we chose not to take care of him.

At that split second I wanted to feed every hungry child on the planet, kiss every single boo boo and tear away, really hurt the parents who did not to take care of their own children, and kill anyone who would harm one hair on any child's head.

I knew with 100% certainty I would step in front of a train, would lift a two-ton automobile, would simply lay down and die, if it meant the well-being of my child.

I was relieved.

And terrified.

And finally, a "Mom" - an honor I strive to deserve, every single day.

21 comments:

  1. Love this post, Em.

    It is so very, very true.

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  2. Very well captured Em...Loved this.

    With our first child, as the staff packed us up and ushered us toward the door to make room for new parents # 9478264, we looked at each other and said, "What makes them think we are even remotely capable of caring for a child? And now we're just gonna walk out the door with it??!!"

    We still ask each other this question...at least once a week.

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  3. I always wonder if I would get home and sort of forget I had a baby in the house. I'm sure the crying would remind me very quickly.

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  4. Great post sweetie. I could identify with so much of that.

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  5. Oh yeah, I can relate. It's a good thing that feeling comes (which it does, like a bolt of lightening) because every kid needs someone who will throw themselves in front of a train for them. And who else will besides their parents?

    Ha. I gave our oldest daughter a middle name because the nurse towering over me in my confused, what am I doing here state of mind, told me I had to. I think she said I had to. 23 years later my husband still gives me a hard time about it. In a good natured way.

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  6. Ah...so sweet Em! And so true. It is terrifying! *smile*

    And my terror has not left me yet! That's why I drown it in as much diet Dr. Pepper as possible!

    *smile and chuckle*

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  7. yeah, i was pretty much on auto-pilot for the first few days (weeks, even). my mommy moment didn't just happen instantly either. but, boy, don't even try to mess with me now!

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  8. I totally get this...bonding with my oldest couldn't happen til he was almost 4 months old... I wasn't prepared for the second one being healthy, so bonding with her took a bit too...

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  9. Great post...so honest and true. Having your first child is a strange but beautiful thing.

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  10. Oh Em, that was beautiful. I think my own heart just grew two sizes and my teen boy just got a free pass from whatever remark might escape from his mouth unchecked today.

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  11. well crap....you got me all misty!

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  12. oy- I too remember the early water breaking and the pitocin induced really really really awful labor _ I was an elderly first time mom of 35 and considered " senile prima something or other". Really. Senile. It was right there in the records. The bonding with the kid happened pretty much right away- I think I was so grateful to her for finally coming out and making the pain stop ( somehow while in labor I blamed the pain on the docs and their nasty Pit Machine Of Doom) that it made it easy. The second one took a bit longer as she spent the first week of her life recovering from surgery in the NICU. But it all happened and they grew up and I like them very much indeed.

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  13. amazing EM, simply amazing. Thanks for making me feel like less of a failure. Childbirth was crazy, and I didn't bond for awhile either...no though my veins fill with fire when I hear or read about others hurting children. There is this guy in florida who throw a toddler out a moving cars window to get revenge at his girlfriend. (wanna go to florida?)jk or am i ;)

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  14. i am pregnant with my first and this made me smile (and tear up....dang hormones!)
    thank you, i loved it.

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  15. I hope I am lucky enough to have that feeling someday; thank you for capturing to so eloquently.

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  16. Thanks guys for all the sweet words. I wish more books would be more honest with new mommies - it's a massive adjustment that should be given due respect, instead of sugar coated.

    And thanks especially to Lee - what a sweet intro, you lovely girl, you. You know the feeling is definitely mutual.

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  17. That was beautifully written Em.

    Thank you.

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  18. Em,

    I agree...more new mommas need to know the reality of what those early days are like. I know I felt like a total and complete loser for not being "in love" with my baby right away.

    Thank you for those beautiful words--right from your heart. I haven't met you in person, but I can just tell- you are one amazing mom.

    Have a wonderful mother's day, my friend!! :-)

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  19. Em- I think you have captured the true essence of it all ...right here.

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