I’ve wanted you in my life for years, you and your sister, your brother. I will be exasperated when you ask for a dog, we will make pudding messes together, you will be allowed to fingerpaint on canvases large enough to paint our lives on.
I want to know you so well, before you are born and afterwards. I can’t wait for the moment TMD holds you in her arms, my hair lank with sweat. I will thank god for every stretch and tear in my vagina, every mark on my body from carrying your weight, my chapped nipples. Sometimes I will be exhausted, sometimes I wil weep, sometimes I will wonder if I am up to the awesome job of being one of your mothers. Throughout those times there will never be a moment I wish you were not here, with me, with us, together.
I want to hold you and make up little songs in the middle of the night. I want to drop with the need to sleep, and TMD to come hold us both, even though she has to wake up in two hours for work. I want to hear you squeal as you splash water all over the bathroom floor. I want to read you the book I will write, just for you, about how you came into this world and became part of our family.
I want my heart to break when you go to your first day of school. I want my little sister to take you on wild adventures that I really don’t want to hear about. I want to buy you that camera, those ballet shoes, that baseball glove. I want to encourage you and remember what it was like to be young once, the world shining and huge and open to possibilities. I want to read you the same book again and again, to the point of skipping words or pages in the hopes you will not notice; I will be pleased, and tired, when you DO notice.
I want you to fill my belly, my heart, our life. I want to go to antenatal classes and trade endless boring stories with other pregnant moms. I want you to be there, to talk to the next one through the thin layer of skin as he/she stretches my body once more. I want to teach you how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, I want to give you lots of time alone with your imagination, I want you to never doubt that I love you – even when you are fifteen and think you hate me.
I want to argue about how well you are/are not learning to drive. I want to visit you at university and take you out for really expensive meals – you and all your friends. I want to completely fuck up braiding your hair, or figuring out how to top n’ tail. I want to fear giving birth and look forward to it at the same time. I want to watch you figure out who you are, and I want to be there – in the background – when you realise that you are who you are right now…who you are does not come at 16, 18, 21, 50, 80.
I want strangers to stop and say how cute you are. I want presumptuous people to feel my belly. I want you to kick them away. I am ready for you; I’m sitting in your room right now. You get the last of the evening’s sunlight. Your window looks out onto this quiet little street, where you will ride your bike and make friends with other scabby kneed kids. This will be your first home, and every minute of looking for that home included reserving a special space just for you. Your room has rose-coloured carpet and curtains – it came with the house, but we sort of like it. There’s room for a little pop-up tent, or a chair with a blanket over it, or a rocking chair.
We’re not rich, but we’re not poor. And when you come, when you emerge into this world, I want you to know that I wanted you with every fibre of my being, that my soul has waited for you this immensely long time, that you were loved before you were even conceived.
I’ve made an appointment with your other mom, to see the doctor who is going to help us make you. It’s for the day after I turn 30, and the best birthday present I can imagine having will be seeing the day that your birth day comes.
I love you.