I remember the day I met Bubba. The nurse bought her to me all wrapped up. She sat her bassinet next to my hospital bed and left us alone. I was terrified. Here I am, 18 years old and a lifetime worth of responsibility was placed in my care. I remember thinking, “Nika, you can’t do this. You are going to mess up this child’s life. You have nothing to give her.” I was too scared to even pick her up. Then she started whining and fidgeting, and I knew she needed me. So, I hesitantly picked her up, and she opened her eyes and grabbed my finger. Her facial expression seemed to say “Mommy, don’t you dare wimp out on me. I need you to be strong”.
Most people say that they instantly fell in love with their children the moment they saw them. Not true for me. I was sad because I bought into the “fact” that my child was set up for failure because her mother was a teenager. I had ruined her life just by getting pregnant with her. I was already a bad mother. Society was right about me. Because of me, Bubba was always going to be ten steps behind children who were raised by older women within the safe confines of marriage. Way to go, mom
Something amazing happened when I toolk her home. This feeling of…knowing what she needed before she needed it started happening. It was like I was psychically linked to her needs. All of her cries sounded different to my ears. I knew the cry of hunger, sleepy, and restlessness. During my pregnancy, I had researched all of the things I should expect and now that Bubba was out of my belly, I researched this feeling I had. I found out that my mother’s intuition had kicked in. According to the research I would always have it. I would always know when Bubba needed me. I felt powerful knowing this, and I wasn’t as afraid anymore. Everything was going to be all right.
Seven years later, I haven’t ruined her life or damaged her psychologically in any way. She is amazing. Yeah, I’m biased, but so what? She doesn’t look like me, but she is sensitive like me. She loves completely and unconditionally like me. She has “kids intuition”, and she knows what I’m feeling even when I try to hide it. When I’m sad, she will abandon her precious You Tube, come into my room and just hug me. No words needed. Just my baby comforting me. Bubba plays Michael Jackson songs when I’m down and then she’ll get me to dance with her. When she is sad, I read her favorite book, Guess How Much I Love You. Her favorite part is “Guess How Much I Love You? As high as I can reach, to the moon and back”…But ever mother reading this knows our love for our children goes way past that. It recognizes no limitations and heeds to no timetable.
Previously Published on Mommy In Color.