Sunday, December 02, 2007

seven years ago

When they laid her on my chest, all bloodied and limp, I felt concerned and protective. I prodded her gently, and said, "C'mon .... breathe, baby, breathe." I waited anxiously to hear her cry, but once she did, and the nurse had taken her to be wrapped, I felt not profound love, but relief.

After relief came fatigue, and giddy excitement, and pride, all intermingled. But within a day or so, no more, came love.

There came a love so all-consuming that it left me sobbing at the end of each day, because never before had I known a love so blistering. I was blindsided by emotion. Suddenly I knew that my life would never be free from fear again, even if I pushed my fear to the deepest recesses of my mind. I had a daughter. I knew I must protect her for years to come; I knew I would love her as long as I lived.

That baby has grown into a brown-eyed, pony-tailed, soft-hearted girl. She is different to her mother - she is more confident, less impatient, kinder - but she thinks like me. I understand my daughter in a way that bonds me to her, far beyond any genetic connections. I love her not only because I am duty-bound to, but because I see in her something recognisable and warm and familiar. Just as I am drawn to my oldest, closest friends, so it is with my daughter.

It has been seven years since this girl baby came into my life. Still I am blindsided.

Happy Birthday Laura. You are a wonder and a delight.

18 comments:

Mimi said...

You are such an excellent writer. Someone once said, having a child is like wearing your heart on the outside. It is such a joy and yet such a worry all at once. Happy Birthday to Laura.

Mimi

shellyC said...

Happy Birthday dear Laura!! have a fabulous day.

Jelly once again your words speak for many!! You just write it so well and so so oh so true!!
hugs to you too
shelly

meggie said...

What a lovely post!
Happy Birthday Laura!

I still feel like that about my daughter- she is 39 now!

Puss-in-Boots said...

Happy Birthday Laura.

I have two daughters and that love/fear thing is a powerful and scary emotion.

I've watched my two grow and have their own children. I couldn't be there to protect them all the time, but they learnt in their own ways, the pitfalls and rewards of life.

It's so hard to watch but I can share their hurt and joys.

Motherkitty said...

I can feel your love all the way over here in Kentucky, USA. I feel the same way about my daughter, who is about your age. It never ends, does it, this everlasting love. It only goes on and on, making us women complete. I dearly love my grandchildren, but that love just is NOT the same as when your own newborn is first placed in your arms. What a miracle to have made a new life.

Happy, happy seventh birthday to your dear daughter. And, happy birth day to you also Jelly for this day marks your entrance into the mommy club lo those many years ago.

TUFFENUF said...

I love the way you put things. It is the way I feel in my heart for my son, I thought it was indescribable until you put it in words. Thanks, Jelly, and thanks for your kind comments, I am glad I know you!

fifi said...

I felt sadness, that I had not spoken to her all those nine months. That I had considered her my body.

She smelt like magnolia. I wouldnt let anyone touch her, so as not to disturb her scent.

Happy birthday, little girl. You have a lovely mother.

thisisme said...

Happy birthday Laura. Jelly, what a beautiful, awe inspiring post.

Kerri said...

It's a life-changing experience for sure, when you first hold that new little life in your hands. A tiny being to love and cherish..a promise for the future.
It's difficult to explain the depths of the love a mother feels, but you did a beautiful job Jelly.
Happy birthday to your brown-eyed, pony-tailed, soft-hearted Laura :)

John Cowart said...

Happy 7th Birthday, Laura.

My youngest daughter is named Laura too.

Susan said...

Yes, I agree with everyone in saying how wonderful you can express yourself! Your words echo all of our thoughts and feelings about our daughters.

I wonder if we will still be reading your thoughts in another 7 years? Ah, age 14 - you haven't felt real fear yet!

I hope she had a great birthday!

Heidi said...

I can hardly wait for your daughter to read what you wrote about her... like, in 20 years. How wonderful of you to tell it like you did.

Happy Birthday indeed!

freefalling said...

Yeah - had to go away and think about this.
Being in the middle of deciding if we are interested in going forward with alternative baby making ways - your post certainly hit a chord.
Your heartfelt words adds to the million things going through my mind - they make the decision even harder but in some ways easier.

Beautifully, touchingly written.
Print it out and put it in a drawer and give it to your daughter when she's 25.

freefalling said...

oh - that will teach me not to read the other comments first!
I just said the same thing as Heidi!
See - it must be a good idea!!

Alipurr said...

what a beautiful & loving post. Happy Birthday to your sweetie!

Sandy said...

Happy Belated Birthday to Laura.

Jelly you have a way to put things into words that I can't seem to express.

Alice said...

I'm sorry I'm so late but I hope Laura had a lovely birthday; why wouldn't she...lol.

I loved your description of a mother's awakening love, where protection is one of the strongest elements.

Redneck Mommy said...

I'm late to the party but I just wanted to wish Laura a happy birthday and comment on how beautiful this post was. Well done Jelly!