Friday, October 02, 2009

Dear Anna Marie,

Eight years ago, I was awakened in the middle of the night with an impossible amount of pain.

After trying, in vain, to get back to sleep, I went to the couch to see how quickly that pain was recurring. After all, I was a whole week past due, and I was scheduled to be at the hospital in a few hours to have my labor induced.

(That means they were going to give me some medicine to make me have you, by the way.)

However, you had decided, on your own, that you were coming. NOW. Not sometime later in the morning. NOW.

As I lay on the couch, I picked up a piece of paper and a pen, and my watch. I timed the pain as I watched QVC, and wished like heck it was really the real deal this time, because I sure was ready for it to be.

(What? Of COURSE I was watching QVC at 3 a.m. It was a fashion show - Susan Grave Style maybe? It was October, and I was looking forward to new fall fashions!)

After about an hour, I tried to get your dad to get out of bed and take me to the hospital. Showing an COMPLETE lack of understanding of the situation, he advised me to go back to sleep - it would make me feel better.


When I finally convinced him to drive me (the threat that I'd drive myself if he didn't probably played into his decision) we put your carseat into the van and went into the dark South Carolina night - we figured we were leaving a family of two, and we'd return a family of three.

I didn't even bother waking up your Gramma or Aunt Manda, just in case.

After getting stopped by the train which ran outside of the hospital - a scenario which we'd joked about many times en route to my doctor's appointments - we were put in a room just as the sun was rising.

Many hours, and much pain (and not very much medication AT ALL) later, there you were - the spitting image of your dad, Gramma's little Pea Snap, nothing like me at all except for your blue eyes - which your Nanny was convinced were only temporary.

What Dr. Middlebrooks said about you after he met you for the first time - that you were the "brightest baby in the nursery" has proven to be truer than we could've imagined. From the beginning, you were inquisitive, strong willed - and always afraid you'd miss something if you allowed yourself to fall asleep.

Being your mother has been more challenging, and more rewarding, than I could've imagined then either. I shudder to think of all of the lessons from God that I would have missed had you not come into my life.

Happy birthday, Little One. I hope that eight turns out to be as great as you thought it would be. I am excited to see how you'll grow - and how I'll grow - over this next year.

Love, your mom (who would have been HAPPY to be called "mama" for a few more years, except you decided on your fifth birthday that you were too big to do so. Not true!)


wendy said...

So beautifully written.

And no, they never DO give us enough pain medication. But with ONE of my children it ACTUALLY felt good to NOT have medication. Surprisingly. The labor went quickly enough with Becca that I just wanted to "do my job" and be done ... and she was out with about two serious hours of labor.

I love the way you write about AM. She seems so wonderful and colorful and strong.

Happy birthday AM!!! I hope your year brings you many wonderful experiences and a great deal of happiness. HUG!!!!


Lissete said...

So sweet! Please tell the Little Miss that my girls are 19 & 20 and they still call me Mommy!