So, it turns out that someone fell over drunk and accidentally knocked the Fast Forward button, Moo. Not only because you are now 3 years old, but also, like the Mother of the Year that I am, it took me 6 weeks to finish writing your birthday letter.
There isn’t really much I can write as an excuse to make you feel better about the lateness… because my excuse is that I was busy moving across the country. Which, I am sure, when you are old enough to read this, becomes yet another addition to the “reasons I hate my mother” list that you’ll no doubt be formulating.
ha ha ha. Awkward laughter…
The other, more truthful reason is… I find it painful to write to you when you aren’t around. I have written and re-written this post, trying to articulate how I feel about you, and, well… now the stakes feel so much higher. Because in many ways, this is now my chance to tell my side of the story. For you to read later. It’s kind of a bigger deal than it used to be.
I remember once, when I was Mina’s age and I said I couldn’t wait to grow up. Grandma said not to wish such a thing, because being an adult is not as great as I think… and that decades pass quickly once you turn 30.
And boy, was she right about that.
My youngest baby, my last baby, my vulnerable, sweet premature baby… is not a baby anymore. And as I ponder for a moment the changes that have occurred since your first laboured breath – where your Dad blamed himself so harshly for not realising that you were struggling to breathe – to us having to navigate our way through our separation, divorce & getting over ourselves for what is best for you… It hits me hard. Right in the guts.
Because this was not what I wanted for you.
And it’s definitely not what I wanted for me: to be away from my baby that I fought so hard to have… and to risk having that day come where you… decide to call someone else “Mum”. Of course, with this decision I have made, I have to live with that possibility. And all I can hope is that somehow, your Dad and I can find a way to make this work.
Despite it never being my plan for you. Despite me always viewing you being full time with your Dad as temporary.
But, how the time flies. And how that one decision, 18 months ago, made out of grief and fear, now has me needing to ask permission to have you. I hope we can work it out. For your sake.
I’m sorry this birthday post isn’t funny this year, but… I guess it speaks to my state of mind right now. I hope that, by next year’s post, things have settled down.
I love you.