They say I came into this world ‘the wrong way’. Killing my own mother in the process and stealing happiness from my older siblings, my father, and ultimately from myself. That’s a very heavy trip to lay on a person’s shoulders. It’s not like I knew the proper way to be aligned within her womb. No baby would deliberately choose to bring their own mother pain, and yet at the moment of birth everyone does to some extent. My moment of arrival into this world unfortunately signaled the tragic end for her. That’s a terrible burden I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life.
When I was young, I asked what happened to her. Well-meaning people tried to shield me from the truth. They answered that she ‘just went away and couldn’t come back’. Their vague, padded response had the opposite effect of what was intended to do. It hurt me deep inside to think she deliberately abandoned me. I concluded that for her to just ‘go away’, I must not have been very important. That emotional wound stuck with me throughout my formative years.
Those cold feelings of abandonment were replaced by a bottomless pit of guilt once I learned the ugly truth. Matricide. There’s no positive connotation of the word. Even when unintentional, it’s both damning and irreversible. The stigma of my mother dying which giving birth to me, followed me everywhere. I knew that it was on the tip of people’s malicious tongues. ‘Breach baby’. They thought horrible things about me, even when they were too polite to actually say so. From the moment I backed myself into this unforgiving world, my fate was sealed.
As a rebellious reaction to more traditional viewpoints, I began to cleave to ‘backward ways’ in all areas of life. I was consumed with unresolved anger and abandonment issues. I adopted an unproductive, defeatist mentality and engaged in just about every foolish form of vice there is, as a misguided ‘virtue’. Whenever possible, I campaigned against the status quo. Now I realize I did those pointless things to kill the festering pain consuming me inside. Those desperate behaviors were a subconscious effort to prop-up my past failings. I was trying to justify and forget a horrible event which I had absolutely no control over. Intellectually I realized that but the guilt continued to gnaw at me.
The lifelong stigma I carried around became a metaphor for cancer to my psyche. Deeper and deeper I shoveled myself into an emotional grave. It might be described as a miracle that I’m not dead a dozen times over from my many mistakes and reckless indifference. The darkness within permeated every aspect of my destructive life. Not surprisingly, my relationships with others were often short lived and shallow. Then, out of the blue a life changing event occurred. I became pregnant. The ‘father’ was little more than a sperm donor in my eyes but I decided that my unborn child deserved a better life than I had allowed myself to have.
With the added responsibility of another human being developing inside my body, I decided to make a conscious change to my mindset. I sought ways to rethink my jaded and flawed outlook on life; lest it subconsciously shape or negatively mold my developing baby. I didn’t want to taint my child with the same debilitating baggage I had carried for so long. I wanted him or her to embark on a prosperous and happy path. Free of the drama I had been immersed in like a self-pity cocoon. I’ve turned my ‘breached’ life around, just in time.
All things have a way of coming back around, unfortunately. The tendency to have a pregnancy in the breach position is genetic. My hips are almost the same as my mother’s had been. I too have a high risk, gestational situation. Luckily the prenatal care I’ve received so far has been vastly superior to what my mother had (because of better technology and medical advances). There are things the doctors can do now to better reposition the baby, or deliver it via Caesarean section, if the need arises. That would have been idyllic for my own birth but it just wasn’t to be. I know that now. The attending physician didn’t have the detection technology available at the time of my birth to warn him about the deadly complication. He was faced with a choice and elected to save my fragile life over hers. Now I realize that she would have wanted it that way too. A mother’s bond to her child is the strongest thing in the world.
At this moment I lie on the delivery table and impatiently wait for my baby’s arrival. The contractions have increased until they are just a few minutes apart. It won’t be long now. I’ve had the past 14 hours of labor pain to contemplate my life and the ‘backward’ mistakes I’ve made. I’m human. We all are. I’ve also reached a place where I can emotionally ‘forgive myself’ for my mother’s death. The psychological toll has been devastating but I can let it all go now. This is what is important.
I hope my child doesn’t repeat the same cycle of self-blame; should I not make it. I’ve come to realize that there’s nothing worse than carrying around a lifetime of undeserved guilt or feeling unwanted, as I did. Trust me little one, you are absolutely wanted and I fully intend to be there for you. Should I not survive, know that I love you and will always be by your side, in spirit. I made many mistakes in life but you were not one of them. I’m recording all these sentimental thoughts on my cell phone to be shared with you (at the proper time), should complications arise. Do not feel guilty or sad about how things turn out. I love you more than anyone could put into words.