Sunday, May 9, 2010

Being a Mom

I was trying to think of what to write about Mother's Day.  Should I write how I love that twos days a year I get to be princess for 24 hours (this day and my birthday?  Should I write how much I loved my weekend and its many activities (I'll save it for later this week)?  Should I talk about how I love my boys more than I ever thought possible?

Truthfully, emotions are heavy on my heart this year as I think of my best friend who lost her baby a year ago.  She should be celebrating Mother's Day with a six month old but instead of squeezing her daughter's chubby cheeks, she is wiping tears off her own cheeks.  Life isn't fair.

Since the words aren't coming to me and the sun is shining outside the window, tempting me to go outside and enjoy it, I am going to copy and paste a post I put on Alexander's blog last Mother's Day.  The thoughts still ring true.  I love being a mom.

Happy Mother's Day!

In all honesty, I never thought I would bring a baby home, because I never thought I would be a mom.
I can remember past Mother's Days and wondering, "will I ever be a mom?" Sitting as a guest at a baby shower wondering, "will I ever be a mom?" Masking the hurt when someone would ask when we were going to have a baby and responding with a flippant remark so they wouldn't see the pain of years of trying. Desperantly wanting to make my husband a father. Over time, the thoughts eventually turned from "will I have a baby" to "I can't have a baby". I think I hit an all time low when we were watching Battlestar Gallactica one night. A cylone announced it was pregnant. I looked at Eric and said, "A machine can get pregnant but I can't!" and sobbed uncontrollably for the remainder of the show. Yes, I was bitter and angry, irrational and hysterical that a fictional TV character could have what I wanted. I laugh about it now but infertility is a nasty beast and I never knew might trigger its arrival. Hope is pulled out from under you more times than you can count and you learn to put up a wall to avoid feeling hurt. Friends and family tell me that time in my life made me stronger but there was a feeling of helplessness which created a weakness in me. I think I have put behind me but when someone begins to talk about their fertility struggles, I'm instantly transported back to those feelings once again.

I found out we were pregnant three years ago this week and yes, I know that remembering that date seems silly to announce on the blog. But I bet every mom can remember the morning they found out they were expecting their first child. The details of that morning are etched in my mind, along with Eric's first sentence, "that can't be right. Your infertile and I'm sterile". Lovely sentiment, honey. All that I had hoped for in 3 years was about to come true for us and yet, Eric was just worried that I was going to drink coffee that morning, which was bad for the 4 week old fetus (never mind the cocktails I had drunk Saturday night with the girls).
The wounds of infertility were still fresh and I was scared to hope. I just couldn't believe I was going to be a mom. I refused to tell anyone of the pregnancy but our parents until we heard the hearbeat. We sent a picture of the ultrasound to our closest friends.  And told the rest of our family at my Grandma's house by refusing a cocktail.  I never refuse a cocktail offer and the look on my Grandma's face when I had to tell her no is etched into my mind.  Oh, the joy of finally being able to share the news.  I never told anyone at work, either. Instead, I told six of my former students in the 14th week and let them spread the news. By the time I returned to school in August, most kids knew I was expecting and hadn't just let myself go over the summer months. And I let my mom tell the staff.  I had the best pregnancy but worried at each doctor appointment that something was wrong. There was still part of my heart that refused to believe that I was going to be a mom.

Even as my belly grew and I waddled and ached and suffered a broken rib due to our active boy, I still didn't believe I was going to be a mom.

1 week before baby
My due date came and went and I still didn't believe I was going to be a mom.
My water broke and I still didn't believe I was going to be a mom.

before contractions hit!
Even when Alexander immediately stopped crying when he saw me after he was born, I STILL didn't believe I was going to be a mom.

But then...
Everyone left the hospital room, except for Alexander, my mom and me. And in one perfect moment, I looked at my sweet son's face and I KNEW I WAS MEANT TO BE HIS MOM.
All of the anger, hurt, and bitterness of infertility seems a lifetime ago. I secretly loved when people said "Happy Mother's Day" to me this past weekend because I am a mom! I love it when Alexander says Mama over and over and over again because I am a mom! I love that my husband and son spoiled me like a princess ths past weekend because I am a mom. They bought me a spa day (ok, so I booked that for myself), made me breakfast in bed, let me sleep in until 10, and they told me they loved me all day long.
I want you to hug your kid(s) or call them and tell them you love them. I want you to stop for a minute and count the blessings in your life. Or maybe I just needed to write all this out and realize that dark chapter in my life is officially closed. And the sunshine that is my son is asleep in his bed, quietly snoring and sucking on his pacifier. Music to my ears. Because I am his mom.

My 2 favorite pictures of us together.

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