Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Beautiful, Beautiful, Beautiful, Beautiful Boy

Seven years ago today I found myself. I found myself under a pile of the former person I had been. I found myself beneath the horror of the words, "An Apgar of 2," and the gut-wrenching pain of watching my newborn baby being whisked away from me. I found myself through every. single. breath I took during the seven hours I waited for him to be returned to me. I found myself in the Mother Bear that believed I could will him to hold on to the tentative grasp he had on the world when he first entered it. I know I love him from the very core of my soul because that's the part of me that I thought would break without him. It's the part of me that is completed by him and it's the part of me that still hurts when he hurts.

I was absolutely unprepared to be a mother. More so because I thought I was so very prepared. I had read every book! But, those books didn't explain what it was like to have your heart outside your body; to feel absolutely helpless.Those books didn't prepare me for the complete destruction of my very self-centered life. Now it was all about him. The fact that I loved him so fiercely made that a bearable idea - but, just barely.

It took eight weeks to understand the new "me". I almost drowned in my own tears during that time. Finally, I felt the old "me" break and completely crumble away under the newfound realization that it would never be all about me again. I could no longer be a selfish little girl. I was his mother. And, I either needed to accept that and be the best mother that I possibly could be or...

Blessedly, I could accept that. There never was an "or". He is my world. He gave me my purpose.

Seven years ago today I became a Mother.

                                                                                   

Happy Birthday, Spence.

By all accounts you were a very healthy preemie. But, you did just cautiously dip your toe into this life when you first joined us - not even prepared to take your first breath without some coaxing. That is your cautious nature to this day. But, after those first few moments, you grabbed ahold of this life and showed us the steel of which you are made. There are times I see a depth in your soul. I believe you found wisdom beyond your years in those first few hesitant hours you spent with us.

Then you were mine to hold. And, I will never let you go.

You are so smart, and kind, and sensitive, and funny - and a complete rascal. I love what a thinker you are. I love that you do. not. want to be the center of attention - but you own it; you stand up for yourself; you stand out as far as your comfort will let you. I love the big brother that you are. I love the friend that you are. I love the person that you are. You are perfectly you.

Happy birthday my darling, darling, darling boy.


15 comments:

Springer said...

HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SPENCE! I AM SO GLAD YOU WERE BORN.

cmjj said...

Ali, what beautiful words. Happy birthday to Spencer! I pray nothing but God's goodness and blessing upon his life!!!!

Avante Garde Parenting said...

Tears streaming down my face and I'm not PMS-ing or pregnant (I don't think). Happy Birthday sweet boy!

Ali said...

springer - couldn't agree more! thanks.

marcy - thank you.

jamie - you have a new baby in your life, too! that's emotional for EVERYONE - aunts included! (and, thank you.)

Kimberly said...

This is simply beautiful writing at it's best. You need to keep this for him!!
Happy Birthday little man!

Ali said...

thank you, kimberly. i will.

April said...

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, beautiful words!

Ali said...

thank you, april.

Kathryn said...

That NICU changes us moms, doesn't it? Who says girls are born with all the drama...thank you Ali for sharing your words with me this time last year. You were a life saver. And I mean that. Happy birthday to YOUR miracle!

Emily Wilson said...

beautiful.....brought me to misty eyes, and I don't even know you :) Happy Birthday!!

Ali said...

we moms are made of our own special kind of steel, kathryn. we never really know how strong we can be until God gives us no other choices, huh?

thank you, emily. thank you.

becky said...

Wonderful story.

The part of "Mr. Holland's Opus" where he sings that song to his son? Gets me EVERY TIME.

Ali said...

i'm going to have to go watch that movie again, becky! i had totally forgotten that part. it IS amazing.

kris said...

My older daughter was not premature, but she had difficulties. Her birth was difficult. She was not breathing when she was born . . .the only noise I remember was a tiny bird-like whistling sound.

My husband got to touch her hand, but I did not.

And they whisked her away.

The most difficult moment in all of my mothering these last 11 years . . . that whisking away.

Tears now. Even all these years later, that moment's memory brings me to tears.

When I became a mother and was forced in that first moment of motherhood to confront the end of that status.

Ugh.

My daughter is fabulous and eleven years old.

And your son?

He is gorgeous.

Wish him a belated happy birthday for me.

Big love.

Ali said...

it brings me to tears now, as well, kris. and it STILL stops me in my tracks out of the blue, even now, seven years later.

love and belated birthday wishes passed on. the same to your wonderful family.

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