Monday, August 19, 2013

"For women who are pregnant, nursing, or who may become pregnant"

Lately, when I hear this phrase--in prescription drug commercials when they list the warnings and people who should not take the drugs--I can't help but feel struck by it.

Probably because I'm in that wide-open, vague category of "women who may become pregnant." My husband and I don't plan to have kids for a while yet, but still--it could happen.

Naturally, the idea of pregnancy, or even being in a state of readiness for it, makes me consider my own birth. My birth mother once wrote in a letter that I was "an easy delivery." (As compared to her son, my older half-sibling.) According to my non-ID medical information, which I obtained at age 18 from the state of Illinois, her labor with me lasted 1 hour and 46 minutes. She took no drugs in labor. I came into the world outside my mother at 8 lbs, 6 ounces. My birth certificate, which I obtained last year, lists the time of birth at 6:46 a.m. (Funny how that little detail was part of the sealed record, as though it were top secret.)

A friend recently reminded me that women get their ovaries directly from their mothers. I wonder if my own pregnancy and delivery will be anything like my mother's was for me or for my brother. Thank you to the Lost Daughters sisters on here who write about their experiences becoming mothers; the gravity of this in relation to being adopted is becoming more real to me each day.

The thought of sharing in common that life-changing, life-generating, physical experience makes me feel connected to my mother. We do not otherwise have a particularly close relationship, which I have made peace about. But there is gladness for me in the thought of connection to her in that way.

I look forward to the chance to not only have a child but to raise it as well--in both of these acts I will join my two mothers. I will feel what they felt. I will be able to empathize, in a real way, with their experiences, and thereby know them better.

If I can do half as well as those two women did with me, in birth and in nurture-- well, my child and me, we might just be all right.
Photo: Terrence Photography via Creative Commons Flickr