Dear First Mommy,
He has called you that for as long as I can remember. His face always has that special smile when he says that “First Mommy.” Usually he says it when he has questions about you or when he wonders what you are doing. I can tell he thinks about you often. As do I….every single day actually.
There hasn’t been a day that has gone by since we got the phone call on August 6th, 2009 that I haven’t thought about you. Wondering how did we get so lucky? How did we get chosen to receive a gift like this? Why us? Why did God choose us to go through all of this? Why did God allow you to go through all of this? Some answers I will never have, and I know that, but you should know that I think about you every single day. Often when I look into his big brown eyes, I think, he has your eyes. Then he puts a hat on that covers his forehead and he looks so much like you it brings tears to my eyes. Not tears of sadness, but tears of happiness and gratefulness. There is that part of me that wishes so much that you could see how he is growing up. But that part of me also realizes the pain that it could potentially cause you to see that. I would never want you to feel pain, especially after all you have given us. Your gift is one so large that there truly is nothing to measure it. After all, you are his “first mommy.” The first heartbeat he heard was yours, your voice was what he grew to recognize, and inside you is where he was safe for 9 months. I can never have that…and that is ok. You deserve to have that title. It’s a title that only the strongest women in the world will ever earn.
We talk about you often; whenever he asks questions, we try our best to answer. He asks to see your picture often-especially on days when he is really curious. He asks to see who he looks like and asks me to tell the story about when we first met him. He always remembers the part when I say mommy cried happy tears. I make sure to tell him how strong you were, and how you didn’t cry, but instead how you were so strong and brave-just like him. (I know he gets it from you). If you could see him now you would see a very strong-willed little boy. He’s a funny, care free, free-spirited and very loving little boy. He loves life so much! He jumps out of bed every morning and he is raring to go! One thing that so many people, especially his teachers, say about him is that he is always happy. He’s always smiling and always making others laugh…he loves life! Another quality I’m sure he gets from you.
I remember very vividly the conversations you and I had leading up to his birthday. We talked so often. Hearing your voice calmed me in a way that I can’t explain. So many people asked me, what do you talk about? My response: “Everything!” You were so easy to talk to! You told me so often how he was a busy boy inside you and that I better be careful because this little boy was going to keep me on my toes. No truer words have ever been spoken. I remember how excited you were to call and tell me that we were having a boy! And I remember fighting back tears when I heard you say, “you are having a son!” You had already placed him in my heart long before you placed him in my arms!
The plane ride down was quick. We thought we were being proactive by getting there a week before your due date. After all, you assured me you told him he needed to stay put for Thanksgiving dinner. We thought we had all the time in the world! You asked me to be in the delivery room-I wasn’t going to miss this! When we landed only to find out you had him on our flight down I remember being disappointed that I had missed it. How could I miss something so important? It wasn’t until the next day, when we finally met you for the first time, that I realized how important it was for me to miss it. The only thing I wish for you for that day-is that you wouldn’t have gone through that alone. If nothing else-I wanted to be there to support you, but God’s plans were different. When we got the phone call saying “Congratulations, you have a healthy beautiful son,” I couldn’t hold back the tears. I was shaking, barely breathing. I had a son…how amazing! But you! How were you? I asked the woman on the other end, “but how is his mom. Is she ok?” The response: “She is amazing.” Yes you were…. amazing is an understatement.
By missing that momentous day, it allowed you to have an entire day with your little boy. You had a day with no interruptions, no one to share him with, and no one to ask you questions…just you and him. Bonding. You needed that. You needed that time with him; it was the most important time for you and him in the hospital. I remember walking into that hospital room and seeing you sitting there. You were glowing. You were beautiful. You had a big smile on your face. I couldn’t help but notice how proud you were of him. You definitely had something to be proud of. Something truly amazing to be proud of!
You had such a sense of humor during those few days we were in the hospital with you. He gets so much of that in his personality from you! When we were first able to hold him, I looked at you and asked “Can I take off his hat?” Without missing a beat you responded with “He is your son! Of course! Do whatever you want!” My Son? But he was your son! How can the two of us share this title? Such an amazing title….Mommy….
I took the hat off and the curl..oh my goodness the curl! He looked so much like you I couldn’t believe it…he was your spitting image! Your nose, eyes, chin and forehead! So much of you in that little person! At that moment, I felt something with you that I will never feel with anyone else-a bond that really no one can explain-it’s just there. You are his mom-and so am I. And I’m so proud to share that title with you. You not only gave him the gift of life, but you gave us something to live for! We didn’t know love until we saw what you did for him and for us.
The next morning when we came to the hospital we sat with you and talked for hours. We brought you breakfast and we talked and talked and I tried to soak in as much as I could so I could tell him later all about you. I snuck you outside to have a cigarette and we laughed about it. I pushed you outside in a wheelchair and you commented like you felt you were breaking every rule possible. We laughed so hard! Inside for me though my heart was breaking for you. I knew what was happening later in the afternoon. I knew once you signed those papers, things would be final…and for me-while it was one of the happiest days of my life, it was truly one of the hardest and saddest because I knew what that meant for you.
We signed the papers that afternoon-as I know you remember. When you were done with yours, they came across the hall to get us…and told us it was over…it was final. I broke down in my husbands arms and cried happy tears again, but the sad ones flowed just as easy. I walked across the hall to your room and picked him up out of his bassinet and handed him to you. I told you, you need to hold him and talk to him. You thanked me…you picked him up and hugged him and kissed him…and you said something to him that I will never forget…. “Be a good boy, and always know that I love you.” He knows nothing but love from you. How could he…all you have ever shown him was love. So much love. In just 9 short months you loved him, kept him safe, held him, and placed in my arms because you felt I could give him more than you could. I don’t know how anyone could ever give him more than you did, but know that I will try my hardest to live up to the expectation that you have for me. Because you have asked me to take care of him, I will, and I will love him with all that I have-forever. I live for my children, and because of you, I have a son whom I adore. I can never repay you for the gift you have given to me. You made me a mother-the most amazing gift I have ever received.
Know that this month, on his 7th birthday, I will wear the same necklace we gave you the day after he was born. My husband gave it to me on my first Mother’s day. He told me it was only right for us to have the same one. Every time I touch it I will think of you. Know that I will wear it, and I will probably sneak away and cry a few tears as well. They will be tears for you-for thankfulness and sadness, because I know what you did was pure selflessness and love and I am forever grateful for that. I just wish you could see all that he is today…so much joy and so much love…and so much of that is from you.
You have earned the title of First Mommy. There are only a select few women in the world who get that title. I’m proud to say that my son’s First Mommy is one of the strongest women in the world. The bond that we have is unexplainable to the world but understandable to us…. thank you for choosing me to be his Forever Mommy. I am forever grateful. He is pure joy and love….all that he gets from you.
With many thoughts,
His Forever Mommy
I’m embarrassed to admit that I have a hard time asking for help. I’ve somehow developed a subconscious personal policy to minimize how much I allow others to contribute to my daily needs. I guess I figure since I’m blessed enough to be able to stay home with my children,