My daughter was born the day before Mother’s Day. Some years her birthday has been on Mother’s Day—including her first birthday.
Obviously, a small child’s birthday takes precedence over Mother’s Day. Even a grown daughter’s birthday takes precedence in our family. But I’ve never minded sharing “my” day with my daughter. After all, her birth was the icing on the cake for me.
Let me explain:
I had a perfectly fine little boy as my first child. He was a good baby and as good a toddler as one could expect. I was overjoyed to have him. When he was born, I thought, like most parents do, that no child could be loved as much as this one.
When I became pregnant a second time, people asked me repeatedly, “Do you want another boy or do you want a girl?”
I gave the expected answer. “All I want is a healthy baby.”
But secretly I wanted a daughter. No matter how wonderful my son was, I wanted a little girl. Someone to buy frilly dresses for. Someone to talk to. Someone to be like me. (I said of my son that all he inherited from me was straight hair and a high-pitched voice. . . . And his voice has deepened now.)
So I hoped in silence for a daughter. And never told anyone I really wanted a girl.
After my labor, when the baby finally came, the doctor announced, “It’s a girl.”
Icing on the cake, was the thought that came to me as I heard the doctor’s words. In that instant, I knew that it didn’t matter whether I’d had a boy or a girl. I would have been equally as happy with either. I was ecstatic to have my little girl, but I would have loved another boy just as much.
Throughout her life thus far, my daughter has been my icing on the cake. Even though she never much liked wearing frilly dresses—she couldn’t crawl in them, nor hang from monkey bars.
Happy Birthday to my daughter this Sunday! Happy Mother’s Day to all!
What memories do you have from your children’s earliest days?