Pay no attention to the Crazy Lady at the dolphin show

August 17, 2006 at 1:43 pm | Posted in Sophie stuff | 3 Comments

Before I got pregnant with Sophie and we were in the middle of all our infertility treatments, I held on to the fact that I knew I would parent.  I knew if we could not have a biological child we would be parents through adoption.  It was my one saving grace and the light at the end of the tunnel that I clung to for dear life.  What I wondered was, will I ever get over the reality that my body will have never carried a child?  Will I ever be ok with the fact that I won’t know what it feels like to have another human being grow inside my body?  I will never know the answer to those questions but I think I know what the answer would be.  Just because I got pregnant once doesn’t mean my desire to experience pregnancy diminished.  Not one bit.

But what has amazed me is the power of parenting.  Pregnancy is great – its a miracle.  BELIEVE ME fertiles,  you have no idea how small a window there is to get pregnant.  NO IDEA.  Pregnancy is an amazing experience unparalleled to anything I have yet to experience in my life….until recently.  What you ask is the experience that has topped the miracle of pregnancy?  Parenting.  Not the day to day crap you have to deal with but the miraculous moments that occur amidst the daily grind.  Case and point: our trip to the zoo today.

I purchased a membership to the Brookfield Zoo this year because Sophie was getting old enough to enjoy the whole zoo experience and honestly, it was somewhere close to go that can kill a few hours of time.  We’ve been about five times so far this year and I can honestly say that we have yet to be bored there.  For a change today I decided we would try some of the attractions we don’t normally visit.  We visited the fragile desert and saw meerkats and porcupines which Sophie thought were pretty damn cool.  We also visited the children’s zoo which is basically a farm inside the zoo so we got to see all kinds of domestic farm animals up close and personal. Sophie even pet a goat!

Our final special destination was the dolphin show.  Sophie has really enjoyed watching the dolphins from an underwater viewing area and since we had free passes to the show, I thought she would like to see the show.  We got good seats – just outside of the splash areas – and could see everything perfectly.  So as the show gets underway I’m getting this feeling.  It’s a feeling I’ve had a few times before and I’m really trying to keep my emotions in check seeing as how we’re sitting about 12 inches away from complete strangers in every direction.  You see I have this tendency to become completely overwhelmed with emotion when experiencing first experiences with Sophie.  I think I was just so lost in the moment of watching her watch her first dolphin show and being excited and amazed at what she was seeing, it just slays me to the core. 

So I’m trying to keep myself from completely losing it and then it happens.  It’s the song.  It’s our song, Sophie and me.  It’s the song Upside Down from the movie Curious George.  See I took her to see the movie about a year ago and it was our first first experience and that was so overwhelming that every time I hear that song I cry.  Not a deep sobbing cry – just a happy, thankful, I love this human being more than anything, slightly teary cry.  So the song on top of the dolphin show pretty much just pushed me over the edge.  I swear the woman sitting next to me with her two daughters kept looking at me sideways to be sure I wasn’t going to grab one of her kids and toss them into the pool.

So for those adoptive parents out there waiting for a referral or for your children to travel wondering what you may be missing by not experiencing pregnancy, let me tell you.  You may never know what it feels like to have a baby kick inside your belly but that is something you can only experience over a short period of time.  With time memory fades and while you do remember the idea of what it was like, you never have the exact feeling again.  Parenting lasts forever and on days like today, when you least expect it and are totally overwhelmed by the miracle of it, may you hold on to your heart and the ride it takes you on just by loving another so completely.



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  1. If it makes you feel any better, I had a similar experience last Saturday. We were at a post-wedding reception (they were married in Mexico in May) for someone Chad works with (whom I really don’t know). They had the typical slide show showing both the bride and groom at various stages throughout their life from birth to thier recent marriage. Well the groom has a younger sister, so watching the photos, I could see Cole and Reese and started to think about the day that they will get married. Somehow, he is going to go from my little “buckshot” who constantly wants me to rub his feet, to a man getting married . And she is going to grow from the fiery little girl who constantly wants uppies and is so damn cute we we have a hard time disciplining her when she says “Mommy, Daddy said F**king”. Between those thoughts and watching the special bond between brother and sister over the years, I just about lost it. As I am again now, just rethinking the experience. You are right on – words can’t describe the love and that you have to hold on to all those special firsts, because before we know it, they will be grown ups.

  2. How right the both of you are!

    I cry thinkg about you.. thinking about your kids growing up!

    There are continual “firsts” that pop up everday it seems. (Jack just bought deoderant!) It reminds me to step back, in the crazy, pulling-out-your-hair moments, and think about how 5 minutes ago or 5 minutes from right now I will have “that feeling” again. It is so worth every ounce of work and then some.

    Not to go all Big Sister on the both of you but…

    I love to witness the two of you parenting. (Aside from the fact that I take great satisfaction in watching you experience things that you jokingly judge me for). You have great kids and your are both GREAT Moms even if you don’t think so all of the time.

    Love ya!

  3. Amen! to all three of my wonderful daughters and their wonderful families. You all know I always cry at happy times and new beginnings or is it endings or is it just anytime I see something that reminds me of how much I love all of you and how blessed I am to have six grandchildren and how much I look forward to number 7 even if he turns out to be Otto! Love you, Mom

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