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Archive for the ‘letters to baby’ Category

Lover’s Gifts XLIV: Where Is Heaven

Where is heaven? you ask me, my child,-the sages tell us it is
beyond the limits of birth and death, unswayed by the rhythm of day
and night; it is not of the earth.
But your poet knows that its eternal hunger is for time and
space, and it strives evermore to be born in the fruitful dust.
Heaven is fulfilled in your sweet body, my child, in your
palpitating heart.
The sea is beating its drums in joy, the flowers are a-tiptoe
to kiss you. For heaven is born in you, in the arms of the mother-
dust.

~ Rabindranath Tagore

(First off, millions of apologies for taking so long to post! We had no internet access at the hospital, and had to stay 48 hours for monitoring. But we’re home now! I have so much to tell you’all, but for now… …)

I feel as if I am walking in a Dali timescape, with clocks melting, landsape shifting, the ground moving and unreal under my feet. But, she, this precious little bundle of warmth, all eight pounds and 20.5 inches of her, is real. She is real and here! My tears surge to type this… thank you for walking with me, breath abated, and all the support you have sent my way. I cannot tell you how much all these means to me.

It was a fast and intense four-hour labor; she made a gracious exit while I screeched and yelled like some possessed baboon-hyena… but she is here nevertheless, and we’re all in love… while feeling as if we are living in a dream.

Thank you, thank you, thank you you all again, far and near, waiting for news. Photos later, and for now, a letter I wrote hours before I headed to the hospital, all hysterical, and needing to unload all that tension… I titled it “Before I look into your eyes”–

My sweet, sweet little one,

I am weeping. Because I am wedged, between joy and grief and pain; between hope and not daring to hope; between anticipation and surrender, and boy, that is such a painful place to be in. But, I am wedged. It is painful, and tangling, what a mess, but I am staying in this place, because this is just where I am now.

Because, you, you, you, you have been anticipated for so long, I am suddenly surprised that tonight, no, probably tomorrow, at some point, I am going to be looking into your eyes. I am going to look into the depths of your eyes and meet your soul. And I will welcome you, once again, back to earth realm. I am finally, my heart, going to feel your warmth and your weight, and press you into my quivering bosom, and hold you there, and never, ever let go. And for that, I weep.

I weep for this opportunity that has presented itself, and that has held itself out for so long. For the door to not have bang shut on my fingers yet. For all the love and pain and beauty that I have experienced this past months. For all the feelings that I allow to wash over me, over and over, wearing down my wretched heart, smoothing over my raggedness, bubbling over my raw being.

I don’t know how to describe this to you. This thing called a mother’s heart. This thing that is a grieving mother’s heart reaching out towards the light, leaning into joy. You have no idea what it means to me to have you come. Although, perhaps you already know, you wise little soul; you are a traveler, just like your brother before you. And tonight, I think he is escorting you, from the realm of the mysterious stars, to us all here. All of us here, who have been waiting for you, little sweet. Do you know? Do you know that you are anticipated by so many people? We all can’t wait to meet you, to welcome you… it will be such a gorgeous, yet humbling moment.

I await. A-trembling, and trying to breathe ever so deeply.

love,

mama

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Dear sweet little one,

so close and yet so far. You understand? I can easily reach down and feel the sweetness and comfort of your form- your spine, your feetĀ  and tiny fists pushing against my belly as you try to find a comfortable position. Your father said the other night it felt like someone trying to find a comfortable position in bed.

Yet, so far. Because I cannot look too much ahead. Sometimes it seems like the moment when I will finally feel the warmth and weight of you in my arms will never, ever realize. It may be a few weeks more to go, but it seems like it is eternity upon eternity aways. I am not impatient, but I do feel scared. I feel scared, even though I have been surrendering. Every day now, my mantra in my head is– Breathe. Surrender. It hurts to grasp so tight, so I uncurl my fingers and let go.

But I am not letting you go. No, I won’t. You are too precious. These last days we have are priceless. Every day I measure the light and the space around me, wondering when you will burst into our lives, our world, cutting and shattering everything with your scream.

I am getting big, and heavy. Ginormous. ButĀ  not waddling too much. Yet. Still, I am like a beached whale if I lay down. Gladly I bear this weight, knowing that you are growing bigger day by day, piling on the essential, cute blubber of yours. My pants are not holding up because the waist-band keeps slipping down, off the bulging belly, and my shirts keep riding up, creeping over the big round curve you have carved out of my body. When I described this indecency of exposure to your father, he said I must be having the time of my life! In some ways, yes, I am having the time of my life. Despite the sadness that tinged every single moment of excited anticipation, I feel joy deep down, its roots stemming from you. I am grateful that you are here. Not here yet, but at least, here. You understand?

Today the doc asked again, if I want to induce at 37 weeks. I declined. It’s too risky, I think, especially knowing that my body does not do well with inductions. So, if no issues arise, you keep growing and stretching and kicking in there, ok? You can choose your own birth date, your own birth time, however you want to make your exit and grand entry. Of course, the highway will not be ideal, or in a restaurant… but we’ll just deal with it when it comes, no worries.

To feel such deep gratitude, to feel such lack of control, makes for a giddiness I cannot describe- sometimes it feels I am not walking on ground, or on this earth. Maybe one day you will understand. I can’t wait to meet you, to listen intently to what you have to tell me, to learn with you and from you, to expand the boundaries of my world to inlude yours. I can’t wait, I just can’t wait for that ending to come; that ending which hopefully will also be a beautiful beginning. I await. Breath held.

Love you much,

mama

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Dear Ferdinand,

it’s been a long time since I last wrote you a letter. But you are never far from my thoughts. You have permanent residence of space in my heart, you know that. I still cannot believe that you are not here with us. I still cannot believe that you chose not to come. It just rips my heart out every time.

Recently, I have had a lot of flashbacks. You know, of that fateful day when we found out that your heart had already stopped beating, and that it was too late to do anything, except to birth you, and hold you and then bid farewell, to your physical body, and all the potential of you and your life entwined in ours.

In a sense, I know that my mind is doing weird things to me, trying to super-impose the past upon the future, the yet-to-be. And sometimes, I get really frustrated, because I did not want to see doom all the time. But, I also realize, that these painful flashbacks is my body’s and mind’s sub-conscious need to intensely grief and mourn for you. Yes, because amidst the crazy swirl of emotions in anticipation of your younger sister, there is that glaring void that is you. There is the bittersweet realization that what is all going on now, is because we lost you. There is that heart-wrenching ache of your absence in our lives. Every month, I still think in my head, how old you would have been. You would have been 17 months, you know? Toddling around the house dragging a hurricane of chaos behind you, driving your sisters nuts with your need to touch and explore everything that previously belonged exclusively to them.

But that space, that home, once reserved for you, with much anticipation, will never be lost. No amount of tears will fill it up. No amount of joy can displace that gaping void. No amount of effort on our part, no matter the amount of tears and blood it involve, will ever summon that hole in our hearts to close up. You are so sorely missed, by all of us. Your sisters still speak of you, and it makes me sob every time, still. No fire will burn away the bittersweet memories of your brief presence in our lives; no flood powerful enough to wash away the ache and pain and love. You are etched in our hearts, forever.

Still missing, and so much love,

mama

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