I dreamed about you since I was 15 years old. I had this recurring dream of a little girl with dimples and curly hair. She was wearing pink footie pajamas with the feet cut off. She poked her head out of a doorway and said, “What you doin’, Mama?”. I said, “Nothin’, Monkey, what you doin’?” She said, “Nuffin!” and ran down the hall to me. Over and over in my dreams. Curly hair. Dimples. Nuffin!
I got really sick when I was about 6 months pregnant. Diabetes insipidus – but not diagnosed until I was already in the hospital and worried about dying. Congestive heart failure. Pulmonary edema. I had a Swan cath in my neck and was in the ICU, delirious. All I kept asking, though, was “Is she ok?”. You were! My body was falling to pieces and you were just fine. Safe in your little house that I built for you. It took one moment – one time your heartbeat stopped….then picked up immediately. The doctor said, “We’re doing this, let’s go” and into the operating room we went.
I was pretty sure I was going to die. I’d heard some young med students talk about extracting the baby. (They don’t do extractions when the mom is alive). I was pretty sure I was dying, but I was ok with that. I just really wanted to see your face. Would you have dimples? Would you have my eyes and curly hair?
The doctor/hero pulled you out and everything was still and quiet, and then you breathed, and then you cried. It seemed to take forever, honestly. I was so tired and felt myself going away. I didn’t know if it was to sleep or to somewhere else, and I asked for you and then there you were.
Dimples. Curly hair. Pissed off and red and screaming. Perfect.
So then I went away, content. I woke up from that big sleep and am lucky enough now to be your Mama.
About two years after you were born, I was sitting on our couch and looked down the hallway. You poked your curly head out of the doorway and said, “What you doin’, Mama?” I said, “Nothin’, Monkey, what you doin’?” “NUFFIN!!” and here you came. Pink footie jammies with the feet cut off and all.
Thank you for picking me to be your Mama. Thank you for being patient enough to wait 15 years to come to me. Thank you for putting up with my faults and loving me so hard. Thank you for teaching me patience and that love has no bounds. Thank you for making me brave.
Thanks for being my Monkey. Saying I love you, kiddo, seems too small, but it’s all I got. Happy 13th Birthday.