From an article on the cultural relevance of neonaticide to both hunter/gatherers and modern society came this quote by Steven Pinker:
A new mother will first coolly assess the infant and her current situation and only in the next few days begin to see it as a unique and wonderful individual. Her love will gradually deepen in ensuing years, in a trajectory that tracks the increasing biological value of a child (the chance that it will live to produce grandchildren) as the child proceeds through the mine field of early development.
And I have to admit, this quote made me feel a whole lot better about how I looked at my daughter the first time I saw her.
Some of you know the details, most of you don’t… but the day my daughter was ripped from my body was the worst day of my life. It’s a hard thing to admit. I love her more than life, she is my entire world, I would give anything for her happiness and security. But that emergency c-section, after three daysof labour, was the worst thing I’ve ever experienced. It’s a hard thing, it’s conflicting. But there is NO conflict in how I feel about the girlie.
I had disassociated. Things were so bad that I wandered in and out of awareness. I remember things in vague patches. Horrifying for the most part. Then there was a baby next to my head, swaddled, and pronounced as mine. And through my haze I was expected to be full of love and life altering emotion… but all I could say was “oh”.
I have always felt horribly guilty for that “oh”. Like there was something not right with me, that I couldn’t instantly forget everything I’d just experienced and be overjoyed and present for my new baby. But it took some time. And I am so grateful for my husband, who cuddled Lily-Ann and showered affection on her, when I wasn’t fully myself. It didn’t take long, but I’ve always felt wrong for not being instantly present and instantly in love… And this one sentence, in regards to motherhood, made me feel so much better.
My daughter really is everything to me. She is why I push so hard for social change. She is why I work so diligently. She is why I love so freely. She is why I am who I have become. I am better for her.
So while my surgery was the worst experience of my life, what resulted from that surgery is the best thing in my life. There is no conflict there. I know exactly where one ends, and the other begins.
I have said it before, and I’ll say it again: I Believe in the Power of She! And She? She is my daughter!
Every year, throughout May, I celebrate an amazing group of Women writers. They are strong, creative, talented, giving, hard working, incredible people – and I am proud to call them my friends. They are the MomWriters.
I can’t recall how long I’ve been one of them, but it’s as long as I can remember… before I was mature enough to really be considered an adult, before I really knew who I even was. They’ve seen me through many, many trials, and they’ve celebrated with me through many triumphs too. The MomWriters are an incredibly important part of my life.
I started writing out names here – but got to 30 and had to stop… there were still so many to go, and well… I’d feel awful if I forgot someone. LOL So better to just say “YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE!”
Today marks the MomWriters Anniversary. The culmination of a month full of celebration, and remembrances. We have a virtual ball. We all choose our dresses (and yes, we call all fit into whatever size we wish, and take whatever dates we like – it is virtual after all). So here is my dress: http://www.simplydresses.com/shop/viewitem-PD675659 And I’ll wear it in MY size. I’m a 15, but am comfortable in my skin. And definitely in the coral, it’s my very best colour. 😉 And girls? This year, I’m leaving my date at home. It would have been my husband or Orlando Bloom – but I’m feeling like a grrrlz night is in order. And I’m going barefoot!
The Golden Pen Awards are always organized by our dear Carma – the true heart and soul of MomWriters – and she tallies our votes on this day every year. I’ve won a few over the years (but always in one category, the John Hancock award). This year though, not only was the award a surprise, but so too was the nomination. Still don’t know who actually nominated me – speak up if it was you. I’d like to give you a big squeeze to say thank you! So, this year? A huge surprise to win the Debate Diva award “for the Momwriter who loves to debate issues — any issues — but does so in a kind manner”. Thank you ladies (and gents, because we do have a couple of gents in our little group), this means a lot. 🙂
When I told my husband that I won the Debate Diva Award for this year, he laughed and said “no shock there”. LOL But it was a shock, a really wonderful one. It really was. I didn’t even campaign for this win. LMAO
Congratulations to all the Golden Pen winners, and to everyone who was nominated – you are all such amazing women. I’m proud to be in your ranks! And to have not yet been thrown out! 😉 Can you guys throw me out? Maybe no-one has thought of that yet. I better be quiet (and pay off Guido). hehehe…
So… before I head to the ballroom to join my wonderful incredible friends – my source of support, of unconditional love, of motherly advice and wisdom, of power, of kindness, of all things good that Women are – Thank you! I know none of us says it often enough. But you truly mean the world to me. I am so blessed to be a part of such an amazing group of women. I believe in the power of SHE!