Sappy Post Alert (But Not At All About School Starting So There’s That)

We only have one kid starting school this week and so we are living the dream. We are living like summer will never end, which is why today, I learned how to use a wrench (maybe a screwdriver? does it matter?) to take off my daughter’s training wheels. And then she learned to ride her two-wheeler.

There’s nothing like school starting in just a bit to make you give it a go. Of course, she had to have been ready since I am not of the running-next-to-the-bike variety. I’m more of a cheer-positive-phrases-really-loudly kind, which is why I’m only attaching a photo and not the video with my loud mouth cheering her on.

The thing is: I can’t believe she is here already. For the first 12 weeks of her in utero life, I didn’t know I was pregnant with her. I had what I thought was a period and then things felt weird, and so I went in to get checked. It only got weirder: first, they thought I was miscarrying; then, they thought it was a molar pregnancy (a type of cancerous tumor that is very much not a pregnancy, but that mimics it at first). There was no heartbeat able to be found; the sac looked empty. I saw what they saw and I agreed. They scheduled a D & C, but continued to monitor my hormone levels, which kept going up, which could signal either a normal pregnancy or a molar pregnancy. Fun times. It was all very medical and very confusing, to them and to me.

A day before the scheduled D & C, they felt it would be best to wait, just in case there were a baby in there, even though, as they assured me, they were 99% certain that there was not. We canceled the D & C and prayed that if it was a cancer, it would just chill out until we could be certain of what was going on. I still have the pre-registration papers from that D & C hospital visit that never came. I keep them to remember that life is full of wonderful and magical surprises.

Eight heart-wrenching days later, we finally saw, amazingly, that we were in the 1% -- her heartbeat lit up on the ultrasound screen. Where in the heck she was before she popped up on that screen, I’ll never know. There, of course. Maybe trying on shoes. Who knows. Anything’s possible.

Anything and everything, some days. Here she is at 4 years old riding away from me. Just like that and she’s off. In Elsa high heels no less, because she does nothing without style.


Because her life started so shakily, at every milestone I am usually in amazement of her, which is really quite a gift for both of us. Instead of, “Oh, here goes another one on a two-wheeler,” I am more, “For the love, Beans! You’re awesome!” It’s such a better way to see the world, really – to be so excited about the next thing instead of ho-hum whatever. Maybe my excitement and amazement with her won’t last forever, but I’d say it’s a great way to build confidence in these younger years anyways. Also, I think it will last and last and I can’t think of a better way for me to parent than that. And maybe that was her gift to me.

Now I get to be always aware of the next things. Always amazed. Always excited. Just the way I was at 12 weeks when that little heartbeat popped up on the screen and we all cheered – the very same way her brothers and I did today when she hopped on her bike and pedaled away.