nine years

Nine years ago tonight, I sat in a hospital bed, wearing a gown and an ultrasound device strapped to my engorged belly, attended by a crabby nurse who ordered me to poop on the bed. Regardless, I was ready, calm, and happy.  I tolerated a Pitocin-induced labor for a few hours before the epidural relief entered my spinal column, whereupon I rested, waited, and watched Alan sleep.

For the record, this kind of experience today would not leave me happy and satisfied, but nine years ago, it did.

Nine years ago tonight, I was about to become a mother for the first time.  I was about to experience the most profound shift of my life so far.  I would embark on a journey more rewarding, more challenging, and more beautiful than I had ever imagined.

Every year on this night I relive the night of Mia’s birth, and perhaps each year it comes with a little more longing and a little more pain than the year before.  Because each year, that night is more distant, less of my own, less within reach.  And so is she.

She is growing up.  She is becoming her own sweet, caring, bright, creative, delightful self.  But then again, this is who she has always been.  She is a gift to me and to the world.  I am grateful and honored to be her mother.

Happy birthday, Mia.