Five years ago, the Journey began.
To my daughter Journey, who yesterday welcomed her fifth birthday with the zeal and vitality only five-year-old girls can muster.
My daughter, five years ago, I held you for the first time. Inspected your tiny toes and fingers, held you close to my bosom, drinking in your delicious baby scent.
My daughter, five years ago, I wondered how I could possibly love you so much the moment I met you.
I asked my self How was I going to be as a mother to a little girl? Boys I could handle, but a little girl?
You entered this world rapidly and beautifully, but only after changing your mind twice, and today, my child, you are still the same in mind and spirit.
The morning of your birth, it was discovered that you were in a position that was unfriendly for the birthing process. The doctors forced your little body to turn around and initiated the labor process. They said it was necessary to go ahead and hurry you up a little bit. You would not be commanded so easily, and you showed them that by turning around again, happy as you please. That caused the situation to intensify because the doctors feared a cord accident if you remained in that position during labor. So Mommy was prepped in a hurry for a C-section. There were no signs of distress, but the doctors wanted it to stay that way. As I lay immobile on the operating table, the nurse spoke in a voice I will never forget.
"Doctor? That baby has turned herself around again! Take a look at this!"
The doctor ordered for an ultrasound machine to be brought in, and sure enough. You had decided on your own time to position yourself for birth, and by golly, you couldn't have been more perfectly situated, nicely engaged in the birth canal just hanging out, waiting on everyone else to regroup and discover that they were not in charge of your birth, you were.
Now with no reason or medical justification to perform a c-section the medical team wheeled Mommy back to L&D and labor began immediately and efficiently. The midwife examined and said, "Oh, it will be a few hours", so off she went to grab a bite to eat, having been at the hospital for hours already, by my side through this whole experience. I said to your Nana, who was also there the whole time, "you know, I think it will be a lot sooner than that". Two hours later, I was holding you. Three hours before they thought you would be ready. Once again, it was obvious, you were in control.
The next evening and days were tough and wonderful. Exciting and full of anxiety. As I welcomed you, got to know you, tried to understand you and care for you the way you were demanding. Questioning my abilities and feeling my instinct kick in to guide the way.
Throughout my pregnancy with you, I felt myself open up and become more sensitive, more feminine, more gentle. People would say to me "Heather, you actually glow". I would just smile and shrug my shoulders, but I felt it too. Never before had I been able to cry at movies, offer hugs freely, or... wear pink (laugh if you must, but it is true). Carrying you I embarked on a journey of personal growth and discovery. I could feel your spirit, so innocent and angelic, so feminine and friendly. You were going to be a 'girlie' girl, yet I also felt a strength from deep inside you. A strength that would one day hold power.
So, your name, Journey, is appropriate for a multitude of reasons. Right now, you love your name and I hope that you will throughout your life, recognizing the importance and meaning behind it. To this day, the nurses and midwives in the doctor's office, when speaking of your birth, marvel in your ability to maneuver around in such a tight space, not just one time, but twice (babies don't usually do that so close to birth because there is just not enough room left for them to move around). They had never seen anything like it before.
I can't wait to see what the next five years hold in store for us.
I love you.