Letting Go of The Dream, And Building a New One
I was chatting with a co-worker and friend while on our way out of the office and we were discussing the idea of resolutions and such.
And I said, "Yea, I’d really like to meet a nice guy this year...”and I paused, and I got all choked up, and the mom in me just came spilling out. “…Not for me, because I am pretty happy being single, but I really want Ellie to have that perfect family."
I went on to explain how earlier in the day, while I was getting ready for work, Ellie pointed to a lion on one of her puzzles and said "Roooaaaarrr." She learned that, sound, and the accompanying scary paw swap, courtesy of my sister, who also taught her one-year-old daughter the same associative sound.
Side note, if you are going to play the “What does ____ animal say?” with your kids, a lion with a scary paw swipe is a great one to start with. It’s extremely adorable and amusing, all at the same time.
Anyway, Ellie’s recollection of the sound a lion makes reminded me that one day in the fairly near future, she will begin to understand the concept of same and different. And she will look at her cousins, and their mom and dad, and wonder why their family doesn't look like hers.
And that kills me.
Here's the thing…from the time I was a 5 dollar pitcher of beer drinking college co-ed, I'd always said I would be happy if I had kids by 30. Ellie was born 3 months before my 31st birthday, so I suppose the universe made good on its end of the bargain. But, implied in that deal was that I would have a child, and that child would have two loving parents, that also loved each other.
And that is simply not the case. No amount of wishing or hoping – or crying – will make my dream of a perfect family for my daughter, come true. And I am slowly making peace with the fact that, even though this new dream is 7,000 times harder than anything else I have done before – it is also more fulfilling than anything I could have ever imagined. And I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
But it doesn’t mean that I am not sad for Ellie.