Thursday, May 27, 2010
Humbled From the Start
When I was young, I thought I knew everything about being a parent. Until 16 years ago today when everything we had hoped and dreamed for the last nine months was suddenly in peril. Our baby was in distress, the monitors were going nuts, and a medical person was putting a mask over my face and telling me to breathe deeply. I distinctly remember a female doctor kneeling next to me and speaking quietly but firmly into my ear, "you need to stop crying. The baby needs as much oxygen as you can take in right now." I felt a splash of liquid across my belly and then slipped into unconsciousness.
And yet, I wasn't completely under because the next thing I heard was a cheer. Many voices were celebrating something.
Several hours later, I was allowed to meet my daughter on the outside. I had known her very well for many weeks. In her safe little cocoon I had nurtured her. I had read stories to her. I had rocked her. I had sung to her and I had laughed when she did her can-can routine. We hadn't known she was a daughter - we were just waiting for the safe arrival of our new baby.
We had no idea that her arrival would be with such fanfare. That the handsome young Navy doctor would be particularly delighted that this little one was not only safe, but beautiful. Covered with a head of dark hair, this precious girl was nothing at all what I expected. I was blonde! I came from blondes and blue eyed people! Her dad was a brown-hair. Where had this dark, thick hair come from?
And then she wailed to be fed and I knew this child was undoubtedly mine. She wanted what she wanted and she wanted it NOW. As we began to make the three of us into a family, we rejoiced that God had a plan for this baby that was just beginning to unfold.
In sixteen years, she has given us joy, astonishment, excitement, and passion. In fact, if you had to choose ONE word to describe this child, it is PASSION. One of her friends once said that if she had any more passion about whatever she was excited about at the moment, the whole high school would explode. He is right. Her excitement about life and her joy in the moment is inspiring and terrifying at the same time.
Happy Birthday to our sweet girl. I wouldn't trade a minute of past, present or future with her. My prayer is that God gives us many years ahead to witness what He has in store for her. This last image is her self-portrait!