a life of her own
Another reason I am so happy to be making contact with M’s other family is the fear/discomfort associated with the fact that M might someday think she lived another girl’s life, Avalon’s life. Thus far, being only two months older than Avalon if she had been born at her due date, she really has been living the exact life Avalon would have. Sure, she is not at all the same person. She has her own personality and interests and quirks. I appreciate parenting more, having lost a child. But for the most part, my parenting is what it would have been, the house is the same, the bedroom, the daycare, the activities and events, the relatives. I would not trade M to have my dead baby back, as much as it pains me to say that out loud. I love Avalon, will always wonder who she would have been. But I could not knowingly trade my cherished living child for anything or anyone. It’s too late.
So today, when we go to meet M’s aunt and cousins, in a sense I feel like I am really, truly, diverging from the family I would have had and the parent I would have been had my biological daughter been here instead. And I am happy about that. I want M’s life to be her own, not the life a dead baby would have had. I want her to be a girl with four (almost five) siblings, two moms her love her, cousins and Aunts and Uncles Avalon would never had had. I want her to have experiences and relationships that would never have existed if she was not uniquely herself, born of one mom, raised by another. Loved by two families. I am a mom I never would have been as well, if my daughter was not exactly who she is, if she had not come from exactly where she did. I am now a mom who shares a title, and happily. A mom who wants to include in her family perfect strangers. A mom who feels love for a woman and family she never met, just because M exists and is wonderful.
Does that make sense?