November 20, 2011
A letter to my daughter.
The daughter I never had and may never have because my ovaries may no longer be functional when I am finished with chemotherapy treatment. (In 6 months) *hopefully.
I am sorry. I am sorry I killed you, I am sorry I killed your potential to be born before you were even conceived. You see, when I asked the doctor about saving some of my eggs so you might come into being one day I was thinking of your birthday. I was thinking of the day which passes, each year of my life, when your birthday happens, or would happen, and I don’t even know it. I don’t even know yet to celebrate, or to not celebrate your birth or lack of birth, death day. I was thinking about the day I’ve always assumed occurs once throughout the year, without my knowing, that would one day be known to me as the most special, most important day of my life. Your birth.
When I asked him about this, asked Dr. Miller about saving my eggs, he rustled up his eyebrows together and said “Honestly, if we took the time to do that, I don’t think you would make it.” I chose my life over your potential life and I hope you don’t blame me, my shining star. If I had waited to save half of you from my own body before beginning chemo treatment I may not have lived to see you fertilized. I am sorry. I am sorry for both of us.
So, to my daughter, my shining star, who in my own mind I’ve named: Cricket Chloe Benjamin Blue. C.C.B.B. I loved that name. Dear Chloe, I do love you.
You would have been like me, with long blond (or brown) hair. You would have made me laugh and dance with you all the time and forget my own fears of inhibition. I would have loved you as my mother could not love me. When I had to run away from life, from my husband, from my country, from my family, from my mother, from my sister, from my father, from my language, from my religion. When I had to run out on all of this (it is inevitable) I would have done what my mother could not or would not do: I would’ve taken you with me and loved you as part of my own body. I would have dressed you in white dresses and brushed your hair every morning before school while you ate toast and gummy vitamins and drank your orange juice. I would have braided it for you every night so it would be curly, or crinkled or straight, or however you wanted it. I would have loved you regardless. I would have planned my outfits to compliment yours and bought you a kitten on your birthday.
Dear Daughter of mine,
I would have cooked you roast vegetables and tofu (maybe even chicken if you wanted it) and salad for dinner and let you have gelato for dessert. I would have taken you to Mexico and Europe and Guatemala and taught you to hold fast on the back of my motorcycle and trained your cat to ride with us. We would have gone to music festivals, just us and danced and danced. I would have taught you how to make cocktails and how to cure mommy’s hangover at seven.
I would always let you run outside to catch the ice cream truck and followed quickly with cash in hand.
When I designed clothes, I would ask for your advice. You would have been my light, my pride and joy, my piece of myself manifested in the world as a self creating creation from birth. You would would have been my goddess and my queen, my legend and my life.
I also doubted having you, before all this. Children are a deficit. Expensive, time limiting, and like I’ve often said, they get in the way of everything I love. Maybe I would need to change what I love. What I love now:
Eating dinner in restaurants
Going to bed late
Spending an hour to get ready to go anywhere
Petting my cat
These things can all be made more difficult or more complicated by the presence of a child. I doubted having you for all these reasons. And today I still do.
You might, after all, still be an option.
© Elizabeth Blue – 2012