Dedicated to my daughter with L.O.V.E.
May you come to understand your past and discover your future.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Singing the lead in a song on Rock Band

Dear Emma,

One of your most favorite ways to express yourself is through drumming on everything that you can, and with anything that will make a sound when it connects with something else. Pencils on notebooks, hands on thighs, it doesn't matter to you, as long as it keeps a rhythm. As much as I don't want to kill your creativity and developing talent, I am always stopping you before you get to the climax of your set. There is only so much drumming that I can take after a while. But no matter how many times I stop you, you are never discouraged from drumming another day, so perhaps drumming, as an art, is in your future. I have considered researching and signing you up for a drum class, where you can be with like-minded little individuals and drum away. You are definitely at that age now where you should be in all kinds of extra-curricular activities. You just have so many things that you like to do, you'd have me running all over town.

You love to sing, play drums, dance, and play football. Yep, you like to play football. In fact, you make it a point to play everyday at school. You are the only girl tough enough to take the boys on in flag football, well, except for your principal, who is a woman, and also joins you on the yard. I heard that, even though its flag football, you tackle the boys down to the ground. That's my girl =). It would probably be really cool to put you on a peewee team.

For now, I guess I will just sit back and enjoy the show.


Friday, March 26, 2010

You Have Lines


Dear Emma,

The other day, you put your fingers on my belly and traced my stretch marks. You are always more intrigued with my belly ring, but that day, you seemed to notice, and admire, my lines. You traced them ever so delicately, as if to not cause me any kind of pain, or perhaps you were trying to read them, know there story without asking me, but you asked anyway.

Emma: You have lines mama.

Me: Yep, they're called stretch marks.

Emma: Stretch marks? Is that because you do a lot of stretching *stretches arms up high to the sky*

Me: No, they came when my belly was stretching when you were inside of it.

Emma: Does everyone have them?

Me: Not everyone, but a lot of people do.

Emma: Oh.

And then you proceeded to trace them again, with the same delicacy, but with added understanding and acceptance. I have realized since you were small(er) that "I" am your first, and most important role model where body image is concerned. Since you were a toddler, you have been taking in, and admiring my body, and comparing my body to yours. Although you did not breastfeed, you were quite fond of breasts - my breasts and the breasts of others. No ones cleavage was safe from your touch. You would put my bras on your body as you sat on the bed and played, waiting for me to get out of the shower. And later, you would compare your little size to my large size, and look forward to yours being as big as mine one day. The joys of having a little girl =). And beyond breast appreciation and stretch mark tracing, you are fascinated with my body hair. Yes, you are! My arms, my legs, my everything else. Again, you compare mine to your sprouting leg hair and aspire to be just like mama.

I'm very proud of the fact that you can look at me and see yourself; I'm very proud of the fact that I can be a mirror for you in so many aspects of your life. Taking things one step further, on my quest to teach you to love your thick, kinky, curly, nappy, long hair, I decided to cut off all of my relaxed hair and go natural. I have my personal reasons for doing so, but one of the most important was to be a source of inspiration and an example for you. You have wanted your hair straighten, and I allowed it once, but I wanted you to see that you don't have to have straight hair to be beautiful... its a choice, not a requirement. All hair is beautiful. I don't think you have ever felt unpretty, but with your friends having hair that is different from yours, and with folks telling you that your hair is nappy and making a fuss, and with me having a perm in my hair, why wouldn't you want straight hair too? So, I joined you. Just as you admire me, I admire you and your full crown, and now I am growing my afro out so I can be just like YOU!


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Worth a Thousand Words


Dear Emma,

About 3 weeks ago, I reintroduced you to yourself as an infant and toddler. We recently moved from the home that you have lived in since you were 5 months old, and during the clearing out process, I found my old camcorder that I had tucked away. There is one specific tape with years of memories on it. I have you from 5 days old to about 4 or 5. There are some moments with past loved ones on that tape too, like, the video of you in your great-great grandmothers arms at about 2 weeks old. She loved you so much. She passed away in 2005, but she spent a lot of time loving you and you loved her just as much.

We got a chance to sit down at granny's and watch that tape in its entirety. You got to see yourself cooing at the camera, sucking on your pacifier, dancing to a little chant that I used to sing that would get you all bouncy and smiley. Go Pooka, Go Pooka. You were my Pookadoo =). Its so easy for me to forget about those days as you grow, but once I see them, I am right back in those moments. Right back to remembering that your first two teeth to come in made you look like a bunny rabbit. You were such a happy little bunny. And when you started walking, around 13 months old, we were at your great-great grandma's, and I drove all the way back home to get that camcorder because I didn't wanna miss not one step. You went from crawling around the living room to running across the floor. It was amazing. I was so happy to have captured your first steps. I could have easily missed them since, at that time, I was back at Cal and you were spending your days and some late evenings with grandma.

The early months and years were so much fun. I took you everywhere with me, even to class! I'll tell you more about that later.


Monday, March 22, 2010

You Were Born...


On the morning of June 5th, 2003, at the same hospital as I was, and in the same way that I was. I laid immobile on the table, as the incision was made and you were pulled from my womb. As you were held up for me to see, I wanted to reach out and grab you as your little arms and legs were flailing. I fell in love at first site. I spent nine months getting to know you, although after about eight of those nine, I was ready for you to take up residence outside of my body. You were a compact fit, lifting your little head up during the day creating a sore spot on my belly. But aside from that, I was just really ready to finally meet you.

I was prepared. I set up your crib next to my bed, filled your pretty bassinet with diapers and a cute blanket, set up your infant carrier in the car, put the wheels on your stroller, put your bounce chair together, put your baby swing together, packed a cute little gown and hat that had little brown babies all over them, and for your ride home, you would wear a snugly bear jumper that was about 2 sizes too big. I wrote a birth plan that expressed my desire to breastfeed you, and my desire for minimal interventions, which my doctors would never see due to all the excitement that morning surrounding your birth. After learning that I had a mass on one of my ovaries during the prep for surgery, the birth plan slipped my mind. So, you were pulled from my womb and taken to the NICU, where you were hooked up to some machines, because you had some fluid in your lungs. My mass, which turned out to be a non-cancerous cist the size of a tennis ball, was removed and I was sent to recovery without you.

I must have bugged the nurses every 5 minutes to see you. They wanted me to wait until I could get up from the bed to come visit you. I just wasn't having that. I wanted my baby. I needed to see you. So, after relentless pleading, I was taken up to the NICU, in my hospital bed, to see you, and when I could get out of bed, I was wheeled back up in a wheelchair to see you, and that's when we really officially got a chance to meet. They removed some of your hardware and I got to hold you in my arms for the first time that day. I talked to you, I kissed you, I loved you. You were not the chocolate Mahogany (that's what I once wanted to name you) that I thought you'd be. Oh yeah. I just knew that you were gonna look just like me, and have an ebony skin tone just like mine. Instead, you looked just like your dad, and had skin as fair as your great-grandmother's. I looked right past you in the NICU =). But none of that mattered in the end. You were perfect and I was proud.

You got to come down and join me in my room later that day, and we laid together, and I inspected every part of you, finding tiny crevices that the nurses had forgotten to clean, which I brought to their attention. And from that first day, you exuded your strength, refusing to breastfeed. The nurses had given you a pacifier AND a bottle while in the NICU, even though that was not my desire. IT WAS WRITTEN! But they never saw those words because I had forgotten to show them. So, there you were, with nipple confusion, and there I was, crying on the phone to my grandmother, feeling like I'd failed you already and we hadn't even left the hospital yet. You never stayed on as a breastfeeder, and I learned to live with that.

I really can't describe all of my feelings that I had for you that day, except to say that I was truly in love with you and have been every day since.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Miss. Personality


My dearest Emma,

You have the brightest smile, the boldest personality, and you have the ability to belt out the most infectious laughter. There is no other little girl on this planet like you, and the space within my soul that you occupy keeps my heart beating.

I created this place just for you. So that I would be able to share with you, in real time, the days of our lives. But more importantly, I wanted a place to share YOU with you. As you know, when I was 2 years older than you are now, my mama died. And what you are still too young to understand is that, when she died, she took the details of the life that we had together with her. I can only learn of those times through the memories of others.

I do not want that for you. If something should happen to me, I want you to be able to pick up a book, flip to chapter whatever, and find out all about yourself, your childhood, me, your dad, what was once me and your dad, and anything else that you may have wanted or needed to ask me. And should nothing happen to me before I am ready to hand these letters/notes over to you, my hope is that I am able to fill in any blanks that you may have in your mind, and that this future piece of literature will strengthen our relationship even more.


Notes to Emma Copyright 2008 All Rights Reserved Baby Blog Designed by Ipiet | All Image Presented by Tadpole's Notez