Today is a special day here at the Smay household. Today is the day we celebrate not only Jordan’s birthday, but also the day we became parents, completed our family, and experienced love as we had never known before. It is a very special day indeed.
At this time, thirteen years ago, I was stressed as I had never been stressed before. Jordan’s birth-mom had gone into labor during an ice storm the night before. She had taken an ambulance to the hospital and had been in labor for several hours. I remember the drive to the hospital that morning. It was the slowest, longest drive we had ever made. The roads were treacherous; the world was blanketed in snow and encrusted in diamond-like ice. I knew our lives were about to change, but I didn’t know just how much or in such wonderful ways.
I’m not going to lie; witnessing the entire labor was hard. I have never felt so helpless in my life. I must also admit, I am not sorry my body can’t do that. There wasn’t anything pleasant or appealing about the entire process. I am not a woman with a hole in her soul because I can’t have babies. There were moments when the pain was so severe and her birth. Mom was calling out for help that I went to a corner and cried while the nurses helped her through the contraction. It was a bit overwhelming, to say the least.
However, I recognize that Jordan’s birth mother did not take the easy way out. She could have made so many other choices, but she made the least selfish one and performed a selfless act. I am forever grateful and in awe of her. Finally, when it was time for Jordan to be delivered, Eric was permitted to come in for what he calls the “grand finale.”
Eric remembers the delivery team coming down the hospital corridor wearing what looked like hazmat suits from the movie Ghost Busters. We stood back and watched as our baby girl came into the world and shook with nerves, fear, and anticipation. Once she was born, everything was a blur. We were permitted to cut the umbilical cord. I made the first cut, and Eric made the final cut. We tease The Bean that it’s Eric’s fault she has an outie belly button. I was holding her when she took her first breath, and she made her first noise. She was then whisked away to have her first check-up and get cleaned up a bit. While we watched the nurses wash her, we laughed because they handled her like a professional football player handles a football. The nurses were all efficiency, skill, and confidence. When we commented on this, the nurse told us, “babies aren’t made of china; they won’t break. They’re actually really tough; did we not see her come out?”
As soon as she was cleaned up, she was handed back to me. I handled her like she was a priceless treasure. I knew, as soon as Jordan snuggled into the curve of my neck, relaxed, and went to sleep, we were going to have a special bond. I was not wrong. She has been the center of my world ever since the day I met her birth-mom, a whole month before she was born. She is and forever will be the best thing that has ever happened to me. She is the reason I live in gratitude. She is my miracle.
When we were going through infertility treatments, I was amazed that a baby is ever conceived because the window to get pregnant is so small. The fact that she was conceived, that I connected with her birth-mom, that Jordan has been healthy and thriving, and that she is the beautiful little soul she does not escape me. I truly view my daughter as a wonderful miracle. I know how very blessed I am to have had this experience. When I say my prayers, I thank God for the opportunity to be a mom. This is a rare and precious gift. I take my gift and my responsibility to her as an oath.
On this snowy January day, the happiest day of my life, remember to stay safe, be smart, appreciate the miracles in your life, and wash your hands.