Friday, May 11, 2018
A letter to the first-born
Driving down Elizabeth Lake rd. on a cold February 2001 afternoon, I heard our song, Faithy. You were tightly securely enveloped within the dark confinement of my womb, as my right hand stroked the large belly now squeezed between the Jeeps drivers seat & its worn down leather steering wheel.
Do you remember it honey? I sang right along with lee Ann Womak as she & I harmoniously belted out at the top of our lungs....
“Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens. 🎵
🎵Promise me that you’ll give FAITH a fighting chance.
🎵And when you get a chance to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance.
Dropping like a turbulent hail storm right onto my growing belly, the tears bounced one by one by one by one.
I wanted nothing more than for you, sweetheart, to give yourself a fighting chance. For you, Faith, to know that when one door closes, there’s always another just waiting to be opened. And when you, Faith, have an opportunity to sit it out or dance... sweet one, I so badly want you to dance.
And then on that cold March 14th day when you breathed that very first breath, I gently whispered into those tiny perfectly delicately & wonderfully crafted ears....“🎵Give faith a fighting chance. Look for that open door. When you get a chance to sit it out or dance... dance sweet one. Oh, please dance.🎵
And so you did. Round & around & around you went in your jasmine princess dress in the middle of your yellow and pink starred bedroom each night. And with each passing twirl you’d peer up through your thick blond strands of hair just to make sure I was watching. “Look mommy, I’m dancing!” you’d delightfully sing as you spun that purple jasmine gown like a true princess should undoubtedly do.
But with each new twirl, each new year, each new milestone, the uninhibited unrestricted unconstrained dancing slowly decreased as your big blue eyes, yet once again, peered through those thick blond strands up at me.
Yet it was this time I heard your watching eyes question, “Are you dancing too, mommy?” “Are you looking for that open door after one has been closed, mommy? Are you, mommy, giving your faith a fighting chance? Are you, mommy, going to sit this one out, or are you going to dance with me?”
Because I’m watching mommy.
“I want to love how you love mom. I want to dance how you dance mom. I want to have faith like you have mom. I want to hope like you hope mom.”
Because what I didn’t realize, sweetheart, is that as much as I longed for you to embrace these words as your immoveable truth, as your steadfast reality, as your unshakeable anchor—
they first had to be mine.
And so you, precious one, it was you who taught me to look with an expectant heart for an open door. It was you who taught me to give faith a fighting chance. It was you who reached out with your sweet little hand glittered with hot pink polished nails and whispered, “Lets dance.”
So, to all you precious first born’s out there.... thank you, on this Mother’s Day, for teaching us mama’s significantly, extravagantly, immeasurably more than we could have ever been taught without you.
There is no other, in all the world, who we’d rather dance through life with... than you.