I expected her to say these words EVERY YEAR. Sometimes I dreaded them. Even though I had my own children and yes, I DID know what the experience of giving birth was all about, that yearly question to me was – NOT AGAIN!!! My mother would ask both of her children, “Do you have any idea what I went through sixteen, twenty-six, thirty-six… years ago on this day?” Of course, this day was the day of my birth. It was more of a joke and a bonding question, and even though I begrudgingly would respond to her question, I had an appreciation and a love toward her and would secretly not expect to miss that question, after she died. I DO.
Having a child is so much more than ‘That Day’. But, of course, that day is monumental. My purpose, passion, and reason for life and moving toward the crazy love that is experienced after giving birth is embraced from this day forward. And, yes, my mother, and now ME look forward to asking that question every year on the birthday of our children. It is jokingly made into a torturous event filled with pain that of course ends with their birth. But accurately, it is the moment that true love arises and life forever from that day is changed into – you are my child, my unconditional love for you will forever be true, sixteen, twenty-six, thirty-six, and forever more. And no matter what the future holds, I will always be there for you. You are my child, my love, my life.
So perhaps I should change my question into, “Do you know what happened after this day…” Nah, tradition is tradition. “Happy Birthday. Oh yeah, do you have any idea what I went through today twenty-seven years ago”. This question today is for my youngest child.
Forever my love.
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net