Love stories are a tricky lot. I've become immersed in the show "Once Upon a Time". Yes, it's hokey. But I am a lover of the fairy tale. Furthermore, I am a lover of the potential for diversion from the typical fairytale. When I read the book Wicked I felt like the author knew that I had always secretly needed the wicked witch to tell her story. Wicked and Once Upon A Time give life and love to the villain, the sisters, and all of the ancillary people beyond just girl meets boy. Love stories are timeless. And yet, they evolve into something different every day. I thought my love story would always be about Seth, my one great love. As it turns out, there's much more to it than that.
I haven't been sure how to talk about my most recent love story. It's complicated. It's taken me to a place where writing in general became confusing. How does one tell a story that feels bigger than the writer? Bigger than the subject? Bigger than everything.
I've decided to give it a go.
It started with a dream. I'm in the hospital holding my brand new baby. I'm crying this deep, weeping sort of cry that feels like a whole lot of happy mixed with some unexpected letting go. I'm staring at this perfect face unsure if the baby is a boy or a girl, but someone is softly whispering boy. I feel like maybe it's August 25th.
I woke up from this dream multiple times in a hugely pregnant state of sleepless delirium. Even in such a state, I would sit for a second and let the feelings from the dream wash over me. This was a reoccurring, fleeting moment that built up over time until one day I was alone in the car and I felt sure it all meant something. I didn't dare tell anyone though. The minute the mother starts speculating on the unknown sex of the baby everyone gets all in a tizzy.
When Seth and I decided to have a third child we didn't sit around obsessing over some intense need to have a son being that we already have two daughters. We weren't "trying for a boy", as they say. We were having a baby. That's all there was to it. So, I felt weird having this dream. I felt like I was subconsciously wishing it to go a certain way, when really all I wanted was a healthy and happy baby.
I began to feel a little nervous. I wasn't nervous because I was planning to have an unmedicated birth for the first time. I wasn't nervous because I had no idea what to expect. I wasn't nervous about having a third child. I was nervous about the letting go and the coming out the other side in a stable mental state. It's been a rough couple of years. Mental status ranks pretty high on my list of things that need monitoring. Something about the significance of the dream, the missing person in the room, and emotions involved in simply having a baby made my head spin.
As my due date came and went and my tolerance for the pregnancy had long since expired, I stopped being nervous. When I came home on a Friday from the doctor's office and the contractions revved up I was thrilled. I mean, no joke, I was overjoyed that they were getting more painful by the minute.
If you've kept up with this blog you know that I don't see things through rose colored glasses. To me, life is nothing if you can't rejoice in the good AND flesh out the bad. Unmedicated birth is everything it sounds like. I have a pretty high tolerance for pain. What I have a low tolerance for is exhaustion. I was expecting to power through the pain. Instead I had to find a way to simply not fall over. Truth be told, the whole thing wasn't all that long. I just remember wishing, even fantasizing, about taking a nap. Currently, I feel like a warrior. At the time, I felt like I was going to die in childbirth. Or at the very least pass out.
When it was all said and done I was looking at the face of a boy. A face not that different from the two I'd previously seen in those first few moments, but entirely different just the same. The room felt slow and sleepy and I found myself physically letting go of so much hurt, anger, and heartache. I felt myself fall in love yet again. I felt something else too. Again, something bigger than having a baby, if that's possible. I felt like this gift at this time was meant to show me a different path and was sent by someone who knew I needed a chance to see only the good for a while.
If you've met Holden you might have noticed. He's got this thing about him that's hard to describe. It's a sort of happiness that never stops. Never waivers. Even when he's crying I can make him smile. He just can't help himself. Happy is just a part of who he is. He's shown me that even on the worst of days there are things to smile about. The twinkle in his blue eyes is eerily similar to what I once saw in my dad. It's like Holden brought a piece of him here. If there is a heaven and these sorts of things do happen, it would be like my dad to need that twinkle to live on in his grandson.
It's cliche really, but this love story of loss, letting go, and birth is my non-traditional fairytale. It is a story I will find a way to tell Holden someday. It brings truth to the notion that life is a never ending circle where honoring the past and living for the present is the best thing that we can ever do.
Welcome to Isn't She Lovely my little love.