Tuesday, January 15, 2008


I still had several errands to run and it would soon be naptime and I was, as usual, stressed. But then I realize, wait a second, take a breath and get some perspective on what’s really important. This is what I wanted. This is what I have waited for. Pushing a stroller while looking back to make sure the toddler was following. Not only was she following, but with glee. I love her smile, her exuberance.

When people ask me if I will have another, I often say no, she demands too much of my attention. Some of that has to do with being firstborn in my own family where I was often ignored while my mother tended to my needier, younger siblings. Yet I get my independence from those experiences, and I do love my independence.

I worry that I am smothering her. My inability to leave her with her father for just an hour because something might happen. The cat might come too close and she won’t be able to resist grabbing his tail and he will scratch her again on the face. But her daddy says to me, “Go already, and stop worrying.”

I only wish I could stop worrying. She still has not been away from me overnight. Nor has she been driven away from me, as in having her daddy or someone else take her somewhere while I remained where she and I once were. I am becoming afraid that I am going to be one of those birthmothers who, when they do parent a child, can’t let go.

As for another child, I find myself coming up with “logical” excuses for not having another one. Just like I came up with logical excuses for not having her for so long.

Meanwhile my son, my firstborn, wants nothing to do with me. In a way, that makes things nice and neat for me. I can handle rejection; I just can’t handle ambiguity – especially the kind I have been living for the last 16.5 years.

It also makes me glad I didn’t wait any longer to have my daughter. For a long time, I thought there would be some contact with him. If I did not have her already I think I would be devastated by his rejection.


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