The Missing Puzzle Piece
On Sunday, July 29, 2012 we celebrated Ninja's 6th birthday. We had friends and family over to swim in the pool with us both Saturday and Sunday, and we took him to dinner both nights as well (I guess it's safe to say he isn't deprived of love!). While we were out dining for Ninja's birthday with our friend's, Pete & Kristin, I felt my first "real" contraction (or at least the first one that I noticed) but I still thought nothing of it. The following morning we went out on our boat to do some fishing with Ninja and, again, our friend's Pete and Kristin, which is nothing out of the ordinary for us. But this time around I started swelling up like a balloon, getting overheated and nauseous, and the sun had not even begun to truly beat down on us yet. I knew something wasn't right and made Stud take me home, but I still was in denial that the baby was actually coming because according to my due date (August 24) and my scheduled c-section (August 17) I still had at least three weeks to go. Well I am very pleased to tell you that I was wrong.
On Monday, July 30th, 2012 at 5:15pm we gave birth to our newest little miracle, whom we shall call TuTu. Of course, we, along with the rest of the world, knew she would come a bit early simply based on how huge I had gotten. However, I didn't really accept the fact that she was planning on making her entrance into this world that very day until we were already in the hospital for a "checkup" where the nurse looked me in the eye and said, "you're in early labor and we are doing an emergency c-section as quickly as possible!" Since that very moment life has been a bit hazy, filled with wonderful, unforgettable moments mixed with a tad bit of painful, also unforgettable moments. But every piece of it has been well worth the arrival of our beautiful little girl.
I'd love to sit here all day and share every detail about the day of TuTu's birth (don't worry, I'd leave the gross parts out). I would start by giving my version of the story, and follow it up with Stud's version which is more comical since he remembers the goofy parts during my anesthesia. But this is the first chance I've had to even focus on writing the blog I've been dying to write all week long so perhaps I'll save the elaborated story for another time.
In order to share this experience I must first go back in time. As I mentioned at the beginning of this entry, we celebrated Ninja's 6th birthday--that's six years that I have spent already as a mother to my handsome boy, who has always been my world from the moment HE came into my life. Our bond was a little different, and dare I say stronger, than your usual parent/child bond because it was just the two of us pretty much from the time he was born (even though his dad and I were still married when Ninja was born, his dad was sent to Iraq when Ninja was only 3 months old---without going into detail, our marriage ended before he returned).
The point is, Ninja was my angel sent from God since the day he was born. He got me through all of the hard times. He was my strength when I felt like getting depressed and giving up. He was the light at the end of the tunnel when I felt lost. He taught me to become more independent and to take care of him and myself on my own. All I cared about was making sure that Ninja had a good life and was happy. We were two peas in a pod, even for a while after Stud came into our lives because we still had our own home and our own lives together, apart from my relationship with Stud (Ninja was 3 years old when Stud and I met). But it took no time for Stud and Ninja to form their own bond, and eventually for Ninja to have the man that he needed in his daily life--to help with "boy" things that I could not do on my own.
No, it wasn't quite expected when we found out we were pregnant with TuTu but it was never taken as a bad surprise either. All three of us embraced the news with full excitement for the littlest addition, but there was still a lot of nervousness, anxiety, and fear of the unknown. Up until the day she was born, I lived with a concern that we were not ready for this. And by "we," I don't mean Stud and I as much as I mean Ninja and I; the two peas in the pod. My focus was still on him and him alone--how would this affect him? What if he doesn't think I love him as much as I used to? What if he hates his baby brother or sister? These were just a few of the thoughts that bounced around in my head quite often. And to be perfectly honest, I was also afraid that I, myself, could never love another child as much as I have loved Ninja. It was just too hard to get past the last six years of my life, where I depended on my son's happiness for my own happiness almost as much as he depended on me. Loving another human being as much as I loved Ninja, even with her swimming around in my tummy, literally seemed impossible.
The moment I heard her first cry, and saw the tears fill Stud's eyes as he choked out, "It's a girl! It's a girl! I love you so much," I knew... I knew I was wrong. It wasn't impossible. It's like I immediately grew a second heart; the first one had "Ninja" tattooed across it, and the second now had "TuTu." I can't explain why or how, but at 5:15pm I experienced a second miracle in my life; a miracle that was just as powerful as the first one. As Stud's mum perfectly worded it, "they are the closest we come to God on this earth."
Immediately, even with the morphine drip hooked up to me, it became very clear. TuTu was the missing puzzle piece in our lives; the piece that brought all three of us (Stud, Ninja, and myself) closer as a family. She is the "baby brother or sister" that Ninja had always begged me for, even before Stud was a part of our life. She is the answer to Stud's prayers--the baby that officially made him the dad he always dreamed of becoming, even before we were a part of his life. In a lot of ways, she is the closure for any pain still lingering from both Stud and I's past. Finally, she is the little girl I never knew I needed and wanted until I held her in my arms for the first time.
I suddenly find myself looking at pink things (I always HATED pink!), dresses, tights and diaper ruffles...... things I could have cared less about two weeks ago. I get excited at the thought of us doing girly things together as she gets older, talking to her about boys and teaching her the same important lessons in life that my mom always taught me.
Yes, TuTu, without any warning you came waltzing into this world and stole the hearts of three people who promise to love you and take care of you for the rest of your life. Thank you for being our little miracle.
This song was dedicated to me from my mom, and I now pass it on to you. I can now understand and appreciate the meaning behind it much better...
And for Ninja, my FIRST angel. Don't think mommy has forgot about you. I have a song for you too, my handsome little love.