In movies, you always know when the really important moments are about to happen because the music swells and ebbs and the soft focus lens sweeps through while time slows down capturing everything in full panoramic detail. It’s nice, I guess, if you’re a movie goer, and if your IQ is 12, because HI, they don’t normally put stuff in movies that isn’t related to the PLOT.
The day that I met The Daver wasn’t one of those days where I had any idea that my life was about to change. We were just meeting for the Einstein exhibit and breakfast in the city as friends, set up by a mutual friend, but it wasn’t all date-y and I certainly wasn’t impeccably dressed. Neither, I should add, was he.
Weeks later, I woke up in bed with him and I had A Moment. It wasn’t a Hollywood Moment, where we adorably shared breakfast in a perfectly fluffy bed, having coffee and witty reparte with our Chicago Tribune, no. I’m sure I was a drooly mess all bleary eyed and sleepy, and The Daver was actually asleep, but I rolled over and Had A Moment.
(I am not a person who has Moments.)
But I rolled over and said to myself: I am going to marry this guy.
And I did. It was one of those rare defining moments. You only have a certain number of those in your life, I think, where something happens maybe to you or maybe within you and nothing will ever be the same no matter what. Defining moments.
The first time I walked into my microbiology laboratory and realized that for once in a long time I was home. Having my naked, warm son laid upon my chest. Finding out that my son was autistic and that I wasn’t just a terrible mother. Knowing that from whatever destruction I found my life in, I would rebuild myself again and again.
I’ve found myself in sort of a mixture of elation and sadness these days–kind of like chewing on a foil-wrapped candy–while I’m really thrilled by the way things are, I can’t help but feel I need to pay tribute and honor the year that we’re laying to rest in a couple of weeks. Never has a year been more filled with defining moments for me.
When I close my eyes, I can still hear my doctor as clearly as if it were yesterday, “Becky, there’s something wrong with your baby’s head” and I can still remember all of the anxious uncertainty. Her first weeks and months were a gigantic question mark. There were no NICU doctors coming to see us or tell us what was wrong, no group huddles or anything. It was all very, “here’s this, here’s that, you can go home, OH WAIT, NO, WE’RE TAKING HER BACK.”
No one comforted us or held us up.
That’s a lie. That’s a lie.
YOU did. As the year draws to a close, I need to once again thank you, my friends who are more than people who live in the computer to me. In a year full of defining moments, I learned who had my back. You did and I am so grateful for all of you. There were times when I all I could do was read and reread my comments and emails because it was like you were here, holding my hand and stroking my hair. Because you were.
I know that if you could have been, many of you would have been. That means so much to me and to The Daver and it will mean so much to my daughter too. I’ve saved every single email that anyone sent me about my daughter in a special folder, and while I don’t routinely open it, because I can’t bear it, it’s there.
I’m shocked and humbled and honored by all of you. Thank you.
I got word very late in the day on Friday that I’d won Divine Caroline’s Love This Site Award, and the only reason I’d won it was because of you. I admit it, I cried. Shut UP, I’ll fart on your TOOTHBRUSH if you laugh.
Sometime in January or February, I believe, we are supposed to get our gift cards, and when I do, mine will be given to the March of Dimes in honor of my daughter Amelia. Because in the midst of all this fucked up year, I’ve found the silver lining. I’m officially a March of Dimes Mom now and while this has been one of the hardest years ever, I wouldn’t change it.
2010 is going to find me rebuilding myself again*, and I’m proud to do it with my daughter, my sweet ass-kicking cinnamon girl by my side. And I know that you, The Internet, will be there too. Now if you tell ANYONE that I have feelings, I’ll kick you.
What are some of your defining moments o! Internet, my Internet? Why don’t you pull up a chair and a glass of Eggnog and tell Your Aunt Becky all about things that made you who you are?
*Am totally getting a tattoo.