Saturday, December 29, 2007

18 Candles

8AM on December 28, 1989 I underwent a C-Section to deliver a healthy, 6.15 1/2 lb, 19 inch baby girl. It was an anti-climactic delivery to the preparation I had put into the nine months I was infanticipating - child birth classes, Lamaze books, Leboyer books, active birth books - you name it, I knew it.

But a visit to my OB-GYN coupled with a possible miscalculation on my part - plus a nervous mother who didn't want anything bad to happen to her daughter (me) or grandchild (Kyera) - left me and my then-husband with no choice but to agree to the expensive operation.

Seeing that we were twenty, both unemployed at the time, and living under my mother's roof, we didn't have much of a say in the matter. So we went home to pick up my and the baby's diaper bag, said good-bye to our bedroom, and promised it we would return with a baby. I turned to my husband and said, "Our lives will never be the same again. The next time we come home, we'll be parents."

You don't really no how much your parents love you until you have your own children. And the revelation doesn't end at birth. Here I am eighteen years into parenthood - sixteen as a single mom - and I still find myself profoundly grateful for my parents, albeit they are both dead now.

A former boss summarized it perfectly. "Becoming a parent ruins you. You are done for. You don't know how much you can love another human being until you have a child."

Welcome to the most joyful destruction of life.

Now that Kyera's eighteen, it's only a matter of time before I will happily gloat over watching her ruin herself. She's been warned that her children will be spoiled.

I can only hope that when that time comes, she will have been well-prepared. The one thing I know she will always know, is how well-loved she has always been.

Aaah, parenting. I've loved every second.

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