Monday, November 23, 2009

Shhhh.... This is a Secret!

There are babies coming out all over the place. So many of my friends are having first or second babies and it's got me thinking about the big lie that everyone tells new parents.

We adopted our daughter. And it took a really long time before it felt natural or normal that I had a daughter. I stumbled over the word "daughter" and felt, in general, like a big fat fake for a good long while. And this caused me great shame and consternation.

After a while, I settled into it and now I put "Mommy" at the top of my self-identifiers (even before Raging Liberal).

I thought I was feeling this way because I adopted Laney. I had myself convinced that the Moms who carried their babies in their bodies and then gave birth to them were immediately prepared to put their own needs second and have also learned somehow biologically through the birth process what immunizations kids need and when.

It's what you see on the tv machine, right? First she's screaming and swearing hilariously and then she's all sweaty and holding the baby and beaming and the Family Is Made Whole.

But, I've talked to my fair share of Moms and Dads and the thing is, it doesn't always happen like that. I think it doesn't often happen like that. I think you have a period of time of looking at your kid and thinking "wha?" or "OMFG, what is this and why did I do it?"

But, here's what I'm telling all the new Mommies and Daddies out there: it happens. It always happens. You just give it some time and then ZING there it is. And it never goes away.