"I think it's a boy," I told Daniel. And my dad. And my best friend. And everyone who asked if I had a feeling in the first 20 weeks of my pregnancy. Boy. Boy boy boy. Even though in every dream I held a tiny dark-haired girl in my arms, night after night, I convinced myself and everyone else we were having a little boy, to be called Simon after Simon Peter, the rock on whom the Lord built His church.
We were having a boy, because I couldn't be surprised with an unplanned pregnancy AND the responsibility of mothering a girl. God knew I couldn't handle that, right?
I'm not saying raising boys is easier than raising girls--not at all. But I did feel an uncomfortable sense of responsibility at the thought of having a daughter. Much of it would be on my shoulders to show her what it meant to be a woman, and considering I still had no idea what that meant, the thought of such a job made me very nervous.
Fast forward because, well, we all know I was carrying a spunky little girl. Shortly after Edie was born we went through several months of scary health stuff, and I was initiated into the reality that motherhood is a day by day kind of deal. One day at a time. We had to figure out what was wrong with her and every day I had to tell myself to just be there today, because I could not let myself go to that ugly "what if?" place. What if things ended up like this? What if I couldn't save her? If I went there, I wouldn't have been here to fight for my daughter's life and move forward.
And now I realize that's how it works with every season of motherhood, although I hope they won't all be that heavy. But there will always be things to work through and overcome, because that's life. I can't let myself go to that broad, scary place of "What if I turn her into a terrible woman?" but I can love on her today and go from there. I can love her father today and go from there. I can serve my community today while holding her tiny hand and go from there. I can slow down, be patient and let her help me put the groceries in our basket today and go from there. And she'll imitate me--she picks up on things SO quickly lately. All I have to do is be present and patient today, and that's who she'll be tomorrow.
And then she'll grow up and spend more time with friends at other houses and have other influences on her heart on a daily basis. And well, we'll cross that bridge when we get there.
But for now, I can dress her in my old baby clothes. Because I have to let myself have a little fun mothering a girl :)