Birth stories. Every mom has one. From the crazy moments when you know it is time to head to the hospital, to the moment you actually get to hold your little bundle of joy in your arms. The story is uniquely crafted, and one that only you know all the details too.
As I have joined the masses and decided to take the emotionally journey of putting my own birth stories out there, the story of my eldest took some thought. While those who know me personally are aware, those who know me through my blog have not been blasted yet with the information that my family is, as many are now a days, blended. My oldest child came to me when she was just shy of 18 months old. Trust me though, hers is a birth story for the books. Only this one was the birth of a mommy.
You see, when I started dating my now husband, I was in no way, shape, or form was dreaming of long term. I knew that he had a child from a previous relationship, and while she was absolutely adorable, I was NOT having kids. Simply stated, I was just looking for a good time, a couple dates, and a bit of catch up with an old boyfriend from my high school days. Having just came out of a long, serious relationship, I was looking for fun.
Problem was, we had a blast together. I had found my best friend and soon our relationship grew into much more than I had intended. A month or so after we started dating, I met my daughter for the first time.
Crazy thing was, our first meeting never came with that awkward “what do I do with you” feeling I had anticipated it coming with. This little girl won my heart from the first time I met her. From park play dates, to movie nights, this sweet little angel was soon a big part of my date nights with my then boyfriend, and I didn’t mind a bit. While my heart was full of love for this little blue eyed bit if perfection however, I pushed not to become to attached in fear of things not working out.
Then one day it happened.
I had watched my daughter for my then boyfriend while he went to work a handful of times. At about 22 months old at the time, she really wasn’t hard. Feed her, bathe her, change her, play with her. We had the routine pretty well down pat. At that time, my name was “her”, “you”, and the occasional “Telwee”. (Pretty damn close to Chelsea right?) Then, one day as we sat watching Ruby & Max (not her or my favorite, but it was what was on) I heard on of the characters talk about their mommy. Two seconds later this bright eyed, curly headed baby doll turned around and called me “mommy”.
I. FREAKED. OUT.
I asked her, “What was that?” “Mommy”, she said again with a great big smile.
Then she gave me a hug.
Then I ugly cried.
At the time, I was not ready to be a “mommy”. (Shit, I was just learning to be adult enough to take care of myself on a regular basis. I had been very careful in the last several years not to get pregnant, because I knew I wasn’t ready.)
“No, hunny.” I tried, “Chelsea, I am Chelsea, remember?”
“No, you mommy.” She said with a smile.
I dialed my husband. I called him repeatedly until he picked up, then just out of earshot of this perfect baby, I frantically cried and explained the last 15 minutes.
And he laughed at me. He laughed, and the almost two year old giggled and smiled. They both thought MY freakout was hilarious. Great.
“Chels, I thought it was an emergency.” he laughed.
“It is an emergency! What do I do? I am not ready to be a mom!” I exclaimed through sobs. “Seriously, I do not know if I can do this.”
“Lets talk when I get home.” he said.
Yeah, tell me how slow those next 4 hours went. My mind was racing. Talk about what? How do you fix this? What was I going to do? Could I be a mom? Was I ready for that? How do we explain to this innocent little child that I am not that person.
Once my boyfriend at the time arrived home, the talking began. While I found myself absolutely terrified at the idea of being responsible for another human being, “long term” talks began to happen. What started as some fun, catching up with a high school sweetheart, was quickly turning into a family whether I was ready or not.
The funny thing about all of this was, while just a few short years prior I had been completely against getting married or having kids, this small child seemed to put it all into perspective. She needed me just as much as I needed her, and it was crazy just how much I needed her. As we continued to talk though my repeated panic attacks, my life started to take form before my eyes, and at the center of it, this precious little girl.
The Birth of a Mommy
And that, my friends, was how I was born into the role of motherhood.
Some may say that it does not count as motherhood because she is not my blood, but I have news for those people. I have changed diapers. Wiped noses. Been handed boogers (in public and while driving). Kissed boo boo’s. Wiped tears. Caught vomit (on more than one occasion unfortunately). Laughed until we cried. Cried until we laughed. Scolded and praised.
I have not missed a single parent teacher conference, extracurricular performance, or living room performance. I have been there through the ups, and through the downs.
As a result, my child acts just like me. (though I will not admit willingly that is where her attitude comes from.) While we may butt heads from time to time, (or at least once a day), this child is perfection. She makes me crazy just as much as she makes me proud, and I had never loved anyone in my life so fiercely until I met her. She taught me how to be a mom, and gave me the confidence to do so. And while I did not believe I was ready when I met her, she made me ready, and made me the person that I am today.
Today, my almost 9 year old keeps me on my toes. Every day is a new adventure with her, and she has added so much joy to my life. She is an amazing big sister, a super fast learner, a beautiful little girl and a very opinionated young lady. While her attitude and mine continue to clash, (see more about that here) she still fills my heart everyday, and she will probably never know just how thankful I am today for the day she chose to call me “mommy”.