I Should Have Named Her Buffy

I am not a brave woman.  I am not daring, I accept my limits and am more than happy to work around them.  I don't like to be tested, or pushed, or tried in any way.  So, 3 years and 9 months ago, when a piece of plastic told me my entire world was about the flip upside down, I'd be lying if I didn't say I panicked ever so slightly.  I wanted a lot of things that day; a nap, some cookies, a shower, and apparently, a DVD cleaner kit that I picked up while I was getting that pregnancy test at Walgreens at 3 in the morning.  What I certainly did not want was another baby.

When 3 years and 5 months ago, a woman in scrubs told me that you were not a boy, like I'd prayed to every god I knew of that you would be, I can honestly say that panic turned into fear.  I never wanted a girl.  I knew I couldn't do it, I couldn't be a mother to a girl.  I knew I'd lose the battle I'd spent 30 years fighting if I did.

When the vomiting started and the green skin showed up and the exhaustion hit me like bricks from the sky, when I felt you sucking the very life out of me, that fear turned into anxiety.  When you spend even one day questioning whether or not you want something, and then decide you do want it after all, well, you really getting to wanting it pretty badly at that point.  And when something starts to go wrong, well, you worry.

When the woman with the chart in her hand told me something was very very wrong, and the other woman with the box of tissues and the informational video told me that we needed to consider the strong possibility of losing you, I'll just say that I hope you never have to feel what I felt those few weeks while we waited for them to test the fluid they took out of me from around you.

You were never easy, not from the very get-go.  You fought me every step of the way.  You made me work for you, pray for you, cry for you, die a little for you.  You knew that if I was ever going to overcome the damage done to me, and be the mother you deserve, that you had to be something I would fight for, something I'd try to barter my own life for so you could have yours.  You're a smart girl, you little devil, you.

You came to me in the early morning hours of October 1st, 2005, 5 years after I theoretically quit having babies, and 7 months after I told your father I flat out refused to make any more.  Even then, you were not easy.  You spent your first day in the nicu, trying with all your might to breath, laying there while I looked at you through plastic, again meeting god face to face in negotiations.  You were the only baby I didn't get to bond with while you were still damp, and I've never know that feeling before, that feeling that I could probably throw a Hummer across the room with ease if it meant I could touch you for a second.  It's a powerful emotion, a mom craving her child's touch, and I will always remember that sheer panic that came with the loss of you in my arms.

You came home a few days later, a perfectly healthy girl with some very silly looking toes.  I've learned a lot about my self because of you over these three years.  You've taught me what I am not, what I am capable of rising above.  You've shown me that most of the things I've held to be of the utmost importance in my life, in my character, are absolute poppy-cock.  I finally know what it's like to be knocked down to my knees, powerless, because of another person.

This thing that we have, mothers and daughters, it's inexplicable.  There are simply no words for the physical and mental and spiritual ties that bind us to each other.  I never would have known that had you not come into my life.  I never would have seen that I can be soft, or silly, or feminine, not without you.

I always say that you are the greatest thing I will have ever given you father, the best deed I've ever done, because god knows he is stupidly, painfully enthralled with you, but I can say without any hesitation that you were the greatest gift that I have ever been given.  I am unafraid, I am brave, I know exactly what I can do now.  Anything.  You were the final piece to my puzzle.  You were the last test I had to pass.  You were the final chapter in the book.  I am whole now, and it's because of you.

Happy third birthday, baby girl.  Thank you for showing me that I can fight my demons, that it's easy and it's worth every minute that's not.  Thank you for being mine.  Thank you for letting me love you.  I always will, for always and ever.

Last year's post is right here, in case you're into that sort of thing.