Around 3 years ago, I came across a beautiful idea; a husband was collecting letters written by mothers to compile and present to his wife as a gift. He knew that he didn't know what it is like to be a mom, but he knew that there was camaraderie amongst mothers, and that having companions along her journey would encourage his wife. I loved this thoughtful gift, and in the comment section one night, I wrote my own Mother Letter to this stranger.
I don't know exactly what I wrote, but the gist of it was how quickly the opportunity to be a mother could have been lost to me.
If you don't know, I spent the first 14 hours after the birth of my first child unconscious. There is one picture of me holding her, but I don't remember that moment, nor any of the visitors, nor the first time I nursed her. My blood loss was great, and 2 hours of stitching didn't staunch it.
God was so gracious to me, and I lived, though 7 weeks later I bled out again and required emergency surgery. The dr. warned my husband that I might not make it, and at the least, my uterus would not make it.
I was 23.
And yet, all my parts survived that trauma, and though it took nearly a year, I conceived my son. At 18 weeks I was put on bed rest and told he or I may not make it to the delivery. The next 20 weeks were the longest of my life, resulting in an emergency C-Section and a terrifying few hours.
Again, we both lived, but I received more blood transfusions and a prolonged stay in the hospital for bleeding.
You see, the point of my Mother Letter was to never take what we have for granted. And when mothering is difficult, when moments come that leave me exasperated, I only have to recall that all of this could have been gone in an instant, and I am back in a place of gratitude.
Fast forward to a couple months ago, and I received an email that I was one of a few mothers whose letters were being printed in an e-book appropriately titled Mother Letters. I am honored that my thoughts on mothering were selected, and you can see my new button on the right that bears my honor.
The e-book is due out March 17, and I plan to buy it as a reminder that I am not alone in my amazing role of Mother, and that I could have, indeed, missed all of this.