Wednesday, September 24, 2008

An Open Letter to My Niece Who Refuses to Be Born...

Dear Delaney Lila Foster –

Please get out of your mother’s uterus. It’s been 41 weeks already.

Your mother has been a real sport about letting you borrow her internal organs for the past 9 months, but I believe you are over-staying your welcome. I think there is a statute of limitations on how long you can just hold up in a uterus. We think you might be taking advantage.

That said, your mom has been a real trooper. She's been going to the gym every day and working out, which you might not realize is ridiculously impressive for a woman who feels like she swallowed a walrus. See, some moms spend their last two months of pregnancy watching Meredith Baxter Bernie movies on Lifetime, demanding foot massages and inhaling tubs of Cozy Shack Chocolate pudding.

Not that that was me or anything. Really. I'm just sayin'. The gym thing is impressive.

So yeah, Delaney, your mom, despite all her good intentions in the gym, is ready to start her life as a normal productive human being again. Like now. Immediately. Last week. She wants to not be dragging around an extra 30 pounds of water weight. She wants to become re-acquainted with her ankles. She doesn't want her husband to have to put her shoes on for her. She wants to get out of a chair without three people having to grab her by her armpits and pull her out like she is an elephant stuck in Tupper Ware container.

These are small things, but important.

Your mom wants to drink a bottle of Sancerre without an iota of guilt that she might be pickling your cerebellum. She wants to eat a meal that doesn't involve a side order of Tums. And she pees a lot. The woman is peeing like every two minutes and your elbow constantly wedged into her bladder, does nothing to help. And that thing you fetuses do with your head slamming down on our cervix at the very inner most beginning of our vagina, making us yelp in public...yeah, well, that's just getting old.

So it’s time, sweetheart. And frankly, it must be feeling a little crowded in there. The uterus only expands so far, you know. It's not like we can fit a baby manatee in there or anything.

Anyway, there are people waiting for you out here. Your Mom and Dad want to get down to the business of being your parents. They want to teach you to ride a bike and read you story books. They want to play with your tiny feet and see whether you got the right body parts from the right parents. They want to wring their hands over private schools and college educations and wonder whether you will become a doctor or an artist or a mom or all three. They want to hear your first word and see what you can do out here in the big wide world. After all, you are their great hope for the future.

And you have grandparents scattered all over the world who are waiting impatiently to set eyes on you and buy you ponies and little frilly pink dresses that your parents will hate, but you will adore. And your grandparents will never tell you “no” and when you are older your grandfathers will slip rolled up dollar bills into your little palm when your folks aren't watching and you guys will have a little secret that no one else in the world will know. It will be obvious - someone will always be on your side.

And you have cousins right here where you live. Girl cousins, Lucy and Edie are their names. And they'll totally get you and they'll show you the ropes and teach you how to blow bubbles and not swallow the gum and how to jump off the highest rung on the monkey bars and not break your femur. And when you get caught doing something you weren't supposed to do, they'll hide the evidence and take the heat for you. And then, you guys will get a good belly laugh about how easy it is to fool your nearly deaf, dumb and blind parents. The whole lot of us. You'll be convinced we are tragic.

And then there's your Uncle David and I. We see jammy parties and weekend camping trips in your future. We see homemade pizzas and laughing girls and staying up until midnight talking under a tent city of blankets, flashlights illuminating your wide-awake faces. We see us yelling at you guys to go to sleep. For the hundredth time that night. And we'll pretend to care and be all angry and parental, but in the dark, David and I will look at each other and feel good that the kids in our family are together, warm, happy and afforded the luxury of being silly.

We see adventures of sleeping under the stars and toasting marshmallows on sticks and made-up stories about witches, trolls and dragons. I won't be there, of course. But this is Uncle David's idea of a good time and it will be one you will pack up and take with you in your memory for the rest of your life.

There is a lot of love around here. Just waiting for you.

See, it's not such a cold, cruel world, Miss Delaney. I know, people say those things and you may have heard them from deep in your little cave, but it is just a thing people say after unhappy news. But unhappy news comes and goes. It is fickle like the tide. What is constant is the love that will surround you like the cozy, familiar womb you are in now, but better. Your world will be one filled with love, hope, security and expectation.

You will be held a lot. You will be missed when you leave the room. People will plot and plan your future. When you simply wake up from the night, your opened eyes will be enough to make your mom and dad smile. You will be carried in our thoughts. All of us. All the time. You will not miss the place you are right now. It is yesterdays news.

So Delaney, there is a vaginal canal with your name on it. Go toward the light, my dear. We’ll all be here waiting for you.

Much love,

Aunt Kim, Uncle David & Your Cousins Lucy & Edie



Familia said...

very sweet. save this for when she becomes a mom!

Jen said...

What a sweet letter! Your niece (and daughters!) are all so lucky to be born into a family full of such love.

Krysta said...

kim, you are awesome at everything... how funny and heartbreakingly beautiful at the same time... the things that did me in was...'someone will always be on your side' and 'your world will be one filled with love, hope, security and expectation' and 'people will plot and plan your future.' jeez, kim, you should be a hallmark card writer and i mean that in a good way!

melissa said...

You'll be convinced we are tragic.

Loved that.

This made me laugh and cry. :D Come out, come out Delaney!

mom2four said...

This was sweet and beautiful, true and heartwarming...loved it...
BUT, as the voice of "having been there" let me just give some hope...I was pregnant with my 4th, a year ago this month, and as we ALL know, the 4th baby just drops out of the vaginal canal, right?!

Well, my sweet little petunia chose to wait the FULL 42 weeks! I refused all inducements and was given the greatest joy to go into labor the night before the "deadline"! I was ecstatic to have my baby come at the time she was ready, rather then on the doctor's preferred time schedule!!!

Tell your sister to keep at the gym, change all the bedding, scrub all the bathrooms, wash every surface of her house, dance around like crazy, do all the laundry, go on a walk and do some nipple stimulation with her breastpump...she'll be in labor in no time!! It worked for me :)

You must tell us when she arrives and the sleep over's begin...they sound like bliss! What love!!

SaintTigerlily said...



That was so pretty.