Well he’s here. My son.
At 6:21am, Red Oliver Varela came into the world roaring with life. I screamed when I saw him. Not a painful scream, I had only phantoms of legs and nether regions thanks to a great epidural, but a surprised and startled (embarrassing) scream. Looking at him in radical amazement, he was the conclusion of everything I had felt during pregnancy, the push and pull of this sort of becoming.
My whole pregnancy I wanted nothing but to feel like my body was my own again. It was a small frustration at first, sparking in the extra motivation it took each morning to get going after I gave up my coffee ritual or as quick and passing as the momentary pains when I would bump into something behind the bar, unfamilar with my new volume and dimensions.
Then I started crying. In the beginning only while listening to sad songs or happy commercials. Then I started crying over watching music videos that reminded me of all my nights out in the city, the lights, the dancing, the potential for anything to happen, the defiance with which we all faced the world, the sunrise. (damn you Calvin Harris and David Guetta.)
I started crying over the work I couldn’t complete because I was just too tired or too unfocused. In all honesty, there was no point in trying. I didn’t know what the hell I was doing anyway because somehow I had become bad at all the things I was good at, even relaxing.
I realized I had not gone into the baby’s room the entire time we have lived here except to deposit gifts and things I collected for him. I’m supposed to be blissfully happy. I’m supposed to be glowing. I’m supposed to be a god damn goddess of nature and miracles and life!
But instead I was an anxious, fearful mess that couldn’t quite wrap my head around why I would possibly do this to myself. Why would I invite this little person into my life of too much coffee, too late nights, plane ticket roulette, spend it all, see it all, defy tomorrow!
I wondered when I would become this mother. Maybe it took the time it takes to wear in a new set of heels or for the stiff spine of a new book to soften. At times, I was completely distraught that I may never accumulate the abundance of selfless love a parent has for their child.
They placed him in my arms and I was stunned by the intensity, the immediate shifting of things. All this time, I didnt realize the biggest part of me was growing inside. All of the things I searched and longed for about myself were being funneled into shaping this little being. To nourish him with life and personality so that when he came out he was immediately recognizable. Mine. Mine. MINE.
How natural. This whole time I was afraid my greatest adventures were behind me, my wildest dreams extinguished. But holding him; in the heat of the instincts, the hormones, the love, the hope, everything was made possible again. I was on a fast train to something exciting, something permanent: motherhood. What is a grander adventure than that?