And when she was born ... I did not have the glowing, lights from the clouds, halo over the baby's head "AHHHHHHH" moment that you always hear about. We didn't know if we were having a boy or a girl and I thought that moment, that surprise was going to be the most amazing moment of my life ... but, when it actually happened, when they announced, "It's a GIRL!" ...
I barely heard it.
This page of my story comes from the first blog I posted where I stopped what I was doing, dropped any of the pretense, and nervously began painting my heart on the table top. The response I received was nothing short of ... inspiring. Fellow women telling me their stories and confirming the fact, that, absolutely, I was not alone.
When I wrote the paragraph at the top of this page I remember feeling a large knot at the bottom of my tummy. The kind of knot that somehow felt connected to the corners of my eyes where tears form. It felt so scary, so sad, but also so GOOD to put it down in words. This journey is now almost 3 years old. And as Sav approaches her third birthday, I want to put down a few more words about how these dark times became some incredibly bright ones.
I may not have had that glorious, light shining down moment on that cold day in the middle of January two and a half years ago, but since then ... and I will be honest, it has taken some time. And I mean, real TIME to get there, I am no longer feeling the same sense of defeat about it.
I used to feel like it had been stolen from me. Like some malicious force had appeared in the delivery room that day just to slam the window shut on the rising sun. I couldn't understand what happened to the joy. It stuck with me for some time. The bitterness. The disappointment.
And through all of that what I didn't realize was that I just had to hold on a little longer. Because that moment, it was coming for me. It was just going to look a little different than what I had first imagined. I was going to have to open my eyes, my ears, and mostly my little anxious, beating heart.
Sav and I were lying in bed early one morning. On the days I am home with her she sometimes wakes up and joins me in my bed with a pile of books, a stuffy and a blanket or two. I've always treasured these moments. But, I can be honest and say that on some mornings, the really early ones, where I am feeling especially tired, I half wish that I could just close my eyes a little longer instead of read her another page of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. There have been mornings that I have not been completely present, wishing more for sleep than for cuddles.
And then on that one early morning, for some reason, she didn't want to read any books, or look at pictures of herself on my phone, or any of the other usual morning Shavannigans (yes, a term Danny and I came up with to describe the combination of her and her toddler antics). She got so close to me and wrapped her tiny little arms around my neck. It hit me that she had never done that before. Of course we had cuddled many times in the past, however, it had always been me wrapping my arms around her. And, so when the opposite happened, I think I had the moment. The one I missed when we were at the hospital and the nurses held her up for Danny and I to see. That light shining down, this is what you were meant to do moment. This is your person, stop and feel your heart as it just keeps overflowing.
I'm not afraid to say that it took me this long to have this moment. This is not to say that I haven't had a number of amazing moments with her, I absolutely, 100% have. However, having a baby, it knocked the wind from my sails with a force I never expected, and it took me some time to get those sails back up and running. But, here I am. Here we are.
The challenges of parenthood are still alive and present, for gosh sakes, she is two and a half years old - half way between this thing they call the "terrible twos" and another phase I wasn't so aware of that has been described as, somehow, ...worse? ... dear Lord - the phase of the "threenager"? (more on this later...).
But, what I can say (and especially to all those women out there feeling the same way I did) - you will find yourself again, those light shining down glory moments are coming for you, and even if patience is definitely not your virtue ... I promise you, just hold on a little longer.