Micah, I owe you your official birth story. It is branded in my head and heart but I still need to get it down on paper to preserve it forever. I am sure I emailed myself some snippets, even from the hospital, but I’m talking about a complete, flowing story. As we approach your first birthday, I’ve made the story such a significant assignment that it will have to wait. I also want your dad to chime in so that we don’t forget a single detail. But for now, here is a preview:
I remember how about one year ago, my doctor had told me that you were gonna be a quick and possibly early delivery because you had already descended into my pelvis. He was right. He was also amazed I hadn’t felt any pain and discomfort as I walked around with a bowling ball lying low in my pelvis. I kept emailing my girls back home about the final doctor visits as your arrival drew near. I tried to get folks to place bets on the actual date. Your auntie NK’s guess was the closest, I think.
Your dad the sports nut remembers most things in relation to sports. So this is what he says as we reminisce, reminisce over you (that sounds like Pete Rock and Cl Smooth’s rap): “Dear Micah, On Thanksgiving Eve, UConn was playing Kentucky in the finals of the Maui Invitational. I was excited to see this game and was relieved when your mom went to take a shower so I could watch the game in peace. I thought the contractions were subsiding since she was able to hit the shower. Kemba Walker was on fire and led UConn to a blowout victory. Good thing the second half wasn’t that close because I had to miss it going to the hospital. Uncle Twiggy texted me the final score while I was at the hospital. If I had known that UConn would go on to win the National Championship in April, your name might’ve been Kemba.”
Though we knew you could come early, we never imagined you’d arrive on Thanksgiving morning. It is so fitting now that we’ve gotten to know you. You always make me so grateful to be your mama. Your smooth, cool cheek smushing against mine. How you literally LEAP into my arms because I am your one and only mama, even when I have yet to wash my greasy face or change into a clean shirt. You are our delight, my toothy David Letterman. You make us Jubilant (another name contender to Micah and Kemba though vehemently vetoed by your dad).
Growing up, Thanksgiving was a tough holiday. I felt so lonely because it was usually our immediate family – just the four of us – with a small turkey and a couple sides. Yes, I was counting my blessings to have our family intact and healthy, but I also felt like I was looking over my shoulder to see other families gather with much more oomph in their holiday, with more relatives and more holiday merriment. I wanted it to be a big celebration. Maybe this child of immigrants watched too many Nancy Meyers movies where the holidays were glorious, decor and all, with white folks hugging each other and sipping on holiday beverages in their palatial homes. Cue perfect soundtrack. Ours felt a bit melancholy, as if we were following tradition just because it was what the rest of the country was doing.
Thanks to you, you have made Thanksgiving exponentially more celebratory. We will always reminisce about your arrival and wherever we are or whoever we’re with, we will be gushing with joy because we received you for Thanksgiving. Thank you so much. And yeah, I still owe you your full birth story. (And I hope you will always spend Thanksgiving with us even when you get a girlfriend your junior year in college. No pressure though because I am so understanding and not high maintenance.)