Monday, May 21, 2012

Happy Birthday!

The only thing more mind-blowing than conceiving unexpectedly at 42 years old is that I'm actually having a baby at 43! This baby will keep me young though. I feel younger and healthier, more vibrant than I ever have (in spite of the discomforts of pregnancy -- heartburn, trouble breathing, back pain largely owing to the beach ball sized belly I'm sporting now!) My skin is softer than ever. I've never been this voluptuous.

No one ever believes me when I tell them my age. Maybe I should stop telling them! Maybe I'll just be 25 from here on out! Sure! My baby's father said I had the body of a teenager. Considering he managed to knock me up inside of a month, I'm inclined to agree!
My family celebrated my birthday this weekend. It's always the May 2-4 weekend. Sometimes it falls right on Victoria Day. Other times not. The year I was born it was Victoria Day. Mom always said that was why I was such a "firecracker." I think being part-Italian, part-Irish and a feisty redhead were also a factor! I've always loved fireworks. The sights and sounds of coloured light exploding like shattered stars. I'm a romantic.

Being pregnant, this is a monumental year for me and my most special birthday ever. My family has spoiled me. I had some amazing gifts even before my birthday. I've been enjoying the swing my Mom gave me. I'm actually allowing myself some time to relax. Spending hours just reading on my swing, in the sunshine, my toes in the sand in my own little backyard paradise (all I need is the sound of the ocean...) My sister has a pond and little waterfall in her backyard. It's so soothing. I'd love something like that but it's not really an option for me at the moment. I might get one of those little mini-fountain/pond things one day just to have a water feature close to my beach. Next year if nothing else I'll probably get one of those small inflatable pools for the baby to play in and I might cool off in it too.

This weekend the weather was beautiful so we all spent the day in my sister's backyard. I didn't realize how huge I looked until I saw these pictures! I do want to point out that horizontal stripes make you look wider. I love maxi dresses though because they keep you cool while being covered.  My white legs are not my favourite right now...

We were all out talking on the patio and Mom brought up the subject of kids to Chris. He confirmed once again that he has no desire to have children and began making a list of the reasons. I felt like he was protesting too much. He must have felt outnumbered since now he's the only one in the family not to have kids. He mentioned how many of his friends had kids and how it changed them. He said that they weren't fun and carefree anymore. They didn't want to dive off cliffs, go whitewater rafting etc. He spoke as though being a parent meant your life was over. That it would become ordinary. He said that everyone he knew with kids became mediocre. I told him that in my case (and I haven't even had my child yet) it's just that my priorities are shifting. For instance, it was on my lifetime to do list to go skydiving. I had actually hoped to cross it off my list before this birthday (I didn't get around to it before my last birthday). Obviously I couldn't do it while I'm pregnant but even after I have the baby, I don't know if I could do it now. It's too risky. My life is too valuable now. I'm a mother. I couldn't risk my life and leave my child alone. Before I was living for myself, it's different once you're living for someone else. My life has purpose. Not that I actually think I would die. I mean I'm sure they're pretty careful with the parachutes and they give you training beforehand to make sure. But I think you still sign a waiver and the fact is that there IS a risk. Before I wouldn't have batted an eyelash. I would have already done it if it wasn't so darn expensive. Now that I'm a Mom, it changes everything. I couldn't live with the thought of something happening to me and leaving my daughter alone.

My other brother Mike agreed with me. He used to be a wild one, quite a daredevil and adventurer but he hasn't really done anything dangerous since he's had children. It's not that you lose your courage, you just feel a responsibility to be there for your kids. You love them so much that you wouldn't risk anything that could hurt them, including hurting yourself.

Got a lot of gifts ahead but still had things to open on my birthday. May gave me a stylish diaper bag with "Baby Couture" on it. It's so cute and practical. Like a huge purse with room for all the things I'll need for baby. She also filled it with some necessities -- nursing pads (my Mom kept going on about how I'll need those), tiny clippers for baby nails etc. I talked about how nervous I was about having the baby and how I worried I was that I wouldn't know what to do. May said I'll be fine. Your instincts kick in and you learn as you go. She's been through this three times though. Both she and my brother Mike have three kids.  

It will just be one for me! This one was already the biggest surprise of my life. Mike was telling me how truly blessed I am. I certainly never expected this at this stage in my life. We talked about how many couples struggle to conceive. It usually doesn't happen so easily, especially at my age. I just know that it was meant to be. I am very grateful.

Shannon asked me if I would want any more children after this one. I said no, that one was more than enough. More than I ever counted on! Considering that I'm not in a relationship (and at this point it's hard for me to imagine getting involved with someone, trusting someone again) and won't be for quite some time, it probably wouldn't be an option anyway. I don't suppose I can say "never" because I've made that mistake before. You just don't know. I could fall in love with someone wonderful who's a single dad with a child of his own. Or could get involved with someone and decide I do want another child with him. At this point I would just say it's highly unlikely.

After Chris' whole diatribe about not wanting children, he had Shannon on his knee and was warning her about watching out for guys and telling her he'd screen her boyfriends for her. She's a beautiful girl. It's scary to think that she might be dating in a few years. Shannon asked Chris why he didn't screen my boyfriends. He said because I'm older. Supposed to be older and wiser, should have known better! If someone had been protecting me and was interviewing men before they were allowed to date me, would any of them have made it through? Maybe not. Particularly not my baby's father. But he had to be the one, for whatever reason. I  am still grateful I met him because but for him this child would not exist. But would I ever let my daughter date someone like him? OH HELL NO!!! I may be a bit of an overprotective parent... I may not have protected myself from monsters but I wouldn't let one near her! In fairness, some of the men I dated were good guys, just wrong for me. Hindsight is 20-20. But if I could go back, I wouldn't undo any of those relationships. They all played a part in shaping my life. They all had something to teach me. They all gave me some wonderful memories that I cherish.

Chris is so good with the kids, I know he'd make a wonderful father. He's probably just scared, as I was. I know that if he ever was going to be a father, he'd be thrilled. His girlfriend is completely against it so it doesn't appear to be in the cards. Then again no one could have been more committed to a childless existence than me. I was driving a two-seater! (I still haven't found a buyer for the car. If you know someone who wants a 2010 Mazda MX5 silver automatic, please let me know!) I saw my future as a carefree single, living on a beach somewhere, falling in love with someone, maybe getting married one day, but certainly not having kids. I just couldn't see me as a Mom. Everything changed when I found out I was pregnant. A whole new set of feelings, beliefs, values, switched on. I was a new me and my old life, old dreams seemed to pale in comparison. This baby was everything to me.

Of course life with kids is different. Maybe I won't go skydiving (not for many years anyway.) Maybe I can't travel as light. I have to give up my cute little car. But the rewards outweigh the sacrifices. My whole life the most important thing to me was love. I was a relationship junkie. I kept falling for the wrong people, trying to find the right one. Trying to find that one all-encompassing love. I never saw that it could be a child. That that is the perfect love. I was looking for my soulmate, that intense connection and bond with someone whose soul is the same as yours. I didn't realize that the bond you have with a child is beyond anything else. She will literally be part of me. She will come into this world innocent and vulnerable and it's up to me to show her what life is, to help her to be strong, to share everything with her and laugh with her. What a gift that is. What a miracle. And I have my whole heart to give her. Yes I'd like to find romance again someday but this time I will only dive in if it's right and real and forever. Only if he can be a loving partner to me and a loving father to my child. Only if he can be strong and sensitive. Only if he is responsible and fun. Only if he has all the best qualities I've seen in the men I've loved with none of their tragic flaws. A tall order. Until then I have my family. My brother Mike offered to be there for the delivery and said he'd help me with whatever I needed. It was very sweet. I assured him I'll be fine with Mom and May there. It's good to know I will have positive male role models in my daughter's life though. Her uncles are very different from each other. Mike is more sensitive, a father figure, Chris is more of a free spirit but both are loving, funny, good men that I am proud to call my brothers. 

I love my nutty family! I laughed so much my belly was hurting. Baby was moving around more than ever. Not sure if it was all the commotion or the sugar (sorry baby I couldn't resist the delicious birthday cake!) I know that my family can help me get through anything. I've been through a lot so far this year but I feel strong, happy and hopeful for the future. I'm proud to be adding another member to the family. We Pinciveros are a unique bunch. Kind of crazy, but real, honest, loving, loyal. We are there for each other. We are a close family.

It was a happy birthday for me. I love when we can all be together and talk and laugh. No one makes me laugh as much as they do. I appreciate them more than ever now.

Last year when I booked my vacation time I never could have imagined that I'd be spending this birthday pregnant! I figured I'd either be skydiving or off on some adventure with the man in my life (whoever that happened to be. There was always someone. Until now, there has always been someone. I've never gone so long without a boyfriend. Baby is keeping me out of trouble!) I had planned to make a road trip to California. I imagined I'd be bikini-clad and driving with the top down. Having a baby is more of an adventure than any roadtrip. It is more daring than jumping out of a plane. Physically, emotionally and in every way this will be the biggest leap of my life.

Chris is wrong. Becoming a parent doesn't make you mediocre. Life with a child is extraordinary because you get to relive your youth, to see the beauty and magic of life again, through their eyes. My life has a purpose now that I never had before. More deep and meaningful than anything else I might have done. To me, love is more important than anything. Being a Mom I know I will feel (and already feel) more love than I ever dreamed possible. And my baby and me will have adventures. We will travel one day. We will cross things off my lifetime to do list. Having a child is something I never dared to dream. It wasn't on my to do list, but having found myself in this position, it feels right and it makes anything else seem unimportant.

The most important birthday of my life is still to come in a couple of months -- my baby's birthday in July! I was talking to my Mom and realized how strange it is that we celebrate someone's birth and make a fuss of them when they really didn't have much to do to come into the world. It's Mom that does all the work! Our birthdays should really be celebrations for our Moms! Now that I have an appreciation of what she went through, I am so grateful to my Mom. Thank you for carrying me for nine months. Thank you for going through the strain of labour and delivery to have me. Thank you for caring for me and loving me my whole life. Moms should be celebrated on our birthdays too! Thank you for giving me the gift of life!  


  1. I really enjoyed your blog! Happy birthday and congrats on your precious baby girl on the way. I am a single mom of 45 with an 11 month old baby boy and a 20 year old son. I feel much the same as you do about my baby and being a mom- there's nothing like the love of a child and no bigger purpose in life than being a mom. :) God bless you and your little one always.

    1. Thank you so much! And congrats on your kids! Always good to hear from other single Moms, especially that are my age. A growing number of us out there!
      Take care. :)