Monday, September 8, 2008

Telling LB her conception story

I have recently finished reading The Belated Baby. For the most part, I didn't find it very helpful. I think it may have been if I was more isolated in this journey, but most of what it discussed I had already either experienced or read about on someone's blog. The one thing that stood out for me was the suggestion to start sharing your child's conception story from the beginning (the book is very much for telling). I realized I was already doing that to some extent, but I started making a conscious effort.

When I ask her, "How did you get to be so cute?" I answer for her, "I was just born that way, " or "Mommy cooked you just right" or "A little bit of daddy, a little bit of Belinda and then mommy grew you."

Sometimes I tell her how special she is. "You are such a special baby, it took three people to make you." and "What an amazing baby. Did you know we had dozens of people helping us bring you into the world?"

The idea is that when you tell your infant his or her conception story, you have time to perfect it and make it positive long before he or she is capable of understanding. Note the "make it positive" part.

Today, I had a sad moment. Perhaps because I was overly tired, but when a wonderful, kind woman told me she had a great first beta after her second IVF (fourth transfer), I enthusiastically congratulated her and then got off the phone and cried. It was the antithesis of our third IVF cycle and it reminded me of it and I was just so sad all over again.

We had both decided we couldn't handle getting the call from the clinic, so we directed the clinic to call our husbands. She was convinced her beta would be negative. I was convinced it was going to be positive, but was afraid of a low beta with an impending miscarriage. Her husband was surprised with a great beta - maybe in the twin range. Mine was surprised with a negative beta. Her husband got to call her and tell her the great news. Mine had to drive home from work with the weight of the news to deliver it to me in person. She and her husband celebrated. Brad and I mourned another loss.

As I cried, I was holding LB and I thought about what these tears would mean. Would she see that I wanted another baby - a baby that came to us a bit more easily? One that shared my genes? I don't want her to think she is anything less than the most loved, desired, appreciated, cared for, wonderful and beautiful person. I decided to tell her an expanded version of her conception story.

It went something like this:

LB, you are such an amazing baby. Daddy and I waited such a long time for you and we are so glad you are here. We tried for a long time and then we had your big brother, but he wasn't healthy enough to live outside of mommy's tummy. We were sad that he couldn't stay with us, but we knew we had to keep trying to see if maybe a baby just like you was out there waiting for us.

Soon we went to a special doctor and he helped us try to make a baby too, but one day he told us he couldn't help enough on his own. He said we had to find a special women who was younger than mommy who had more healthy eggs. So we started looking and soon we found that special woman and her name was Belinda. She gave mommy her eggs and together with daddy and few other people, we made you! When you were just 6 days old, we put you into mommy's tummy and there you stayed until the day you were ready to come out.

And now look at you! You are such a big girl! You have such pretty eyes and you can hold your head up all by yourself. You like to go in the potty and you are learning about your right hand. What an amazing girl! And you have so much to learn about and discover! How lucky am I to be your mother? I love you so much!

I felt better and I think the story is getting better too.

18 comments:

Sara said...

That's beautiful! LB is very lucky that you are thinking about this now.

Lanie said...

I love the story! It really, really touches my heart. LB is such a lucky little girl to have such a great mama.

Lanie said...

I forgot to say . . . "It takes a village" is SO appropriate. Not just for raising a child, but in our cases, it takes a village to create a child! It's nice to be able to share the size of the village with that little one.

Sheridan said...

Such a beautiful, loving story - full of real meaning as well as the idea of destiny. I like the idea that bad luck doesn't necessarily thwart us, that you can make your own destiny.

One of my old art school instructors used to say "How it is IS what it is!" all the time. Time and again I'm reminded how true it is. How this story is will be so much more meaningful than the facts it contains, and it's a lovely way to tell LB about herself.

Lori said...

It's a beautiful story, Kami.

Jill said...

that even made me cry a little...

i'm so happy for you and your family!

luna said...

really beautiful story, kami.

Geohde said...

That's really well done, Kami.

LB is a lucky baby,

xx

J

Irish Girl said...

That was a beautiful post to your daughter, Kami.

Lisa said...

Kami - that is a beautiful story! As we've considered using donor egg, I've felt it was very important for us to tell our child, from the beginning, how he or she came to us and your story was just perfect!

familyoftwo98 said...

How lucky is LB to have YOU as her mother!

battynurse said...

I like it. And yes I agree with the telling early and making it positive.

stacyb said...

i'd read something about telling the conception story too, and forgotten. thank you for the reminder and for sharing what you will tell LB...it's beautiful.

niobe said...

I love thsy story.

One of my friends who used donor eggs for her two children (from two different donors with two different fathers) tells them a very similar story.

Although she uses the word "cell" instead of "egg" because she's afraid the kids might get the idea that she got them from a half-dozen crate of jumbo extra large that she tossed in her grocery cart one day while walking through the dairy section. (And why *are* eggs in the dairy section anyway)

singletracey said...

Oh Kami! That is a beautiful story! I love it!!!

MrsSpock said...

I think you tell it very well...

Bee Cee said...

This was lovely. It makes me feel choked knowing I may have to do that one day in the future too. I love learning how things are going with you and LB.

Kate said...

Awwww. That made me cry. Sad tears for your sad memories and happy tears for your new ones!