Saturday, November 29, 2008
Much Better Than Tropical Fish
A mother's love is something I never understood. My mother used to drive me crazy with her incessant worrying. I had to call her whenever I went somewhere and when I got home from where I was going (even after I was married). She drove me crazy. And then, something happened, I had my own daughter.
Now, if you ask either of my children, they will tell you that I am not exactly the maternal type. I used to turn the clocks ahead because my little princess could read numbers before she could walk and I wanted her to go to sleep early (dinner at 4, bath at 5 and bed at 6). She knew that I never got up before the clock said 7:00 so I used to distract her until the clock said 7:02. (It took her a while to catch on to that. I enjoyed outsmarting a year old child.) In fact, for years I told everyone that I would never have children, my tropical fish were all that I needed.
If someone had told me how I would feel when I had this child, I would have told them they were nuts. I felt awful while I was pregnant, yet I relished every little kick or movement while she was inside of me.
Words can never come close to expressing the way I felt the first time I held her and how I feel about her, even today, every time I look at her or think about her. Things are not always great between us. I know there have been many times when we did not like each other but there was never one moment when I did not love her. To this day, I can think of no one I love more than I love her (or her brother).
Today, as my precious bundle of joy turns 28, I recall her lying in bed with me, rubbing her bottle all over my belly, to give milk to her unborn precious baby brother, I remember her sitting on the living room floor, cutting out pictures beginning with the letter K and yelling in "how is clock, kitchen?" and her fighting with her first grade teacher because she wanted to use a picture of a knee and a knife as her "k" words. I remember her falling off the podium as she gave her fifth grade salutatorian address, after the principal predicted she would fall because she was always reading. I remember the pain I felt as we packed her off to college. It was as though someone put their hand down my throat and ripped out my heart. I remember the joy when the phone call came telling her that she got the job she wanted with all her heart.
My special, wonderful baby girl lives many hours away from me now. I miss all our theater and museum trips and how she likes to wander the city aimlessly with me. But, I know she is happy. She has a fantastic job, a beautiful house and a very special boyfriend.
Happy birthday daughter. I love you more than you will ever know.