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Happy Golden Birthday to the Child who Made me a Mom

by Deborah Cruz

Happy Birthday, Bella!

Ten years ago today, the most important thing in my life happened… I became a mother. I can’t believe I’ve been a mom for an entire decade. It feels like yesterday. I don’t even remember my life before my daughters were born. It all seems so trivial now.

birth, birthday

I was not ready. I thought I was but I had no idea what being a mother really meant. I was prepared for changing diapers, kissing booboos and 3 a.m. feedings but I never, in a million years, could have known that it meant falling deeply, completely and totally head over heels in love with the vernix covered miracle that I would meet on that day. God was she beautiful.


I don’t mean in the traditional way like when you admire a painting or a flower. No I mean in the way a sunset is breathtaking because you know you are looking at the work of God. Looking upon my Bella, my miracle, for the first time was like flying for the first time or seeing the Grand Canyon in person. It was next level, mind blowing love. It was surreal beauty and it was the moment I knew my purpose, my destiny. That tiny bundle of everything, she made me whole.


When she was born, I was transfixed watching her tiny head come into the world via a mirror. With each push, I was closer to forever. My heart was racing. It hurt like hell but I didn’t care because all I wanted to do was hold her in my arms. Have you ever wanted anything that much? Can anyone ever want anything as much as to meet the child they’ve been growing inside of them for 10 months? I don’t think so. It is a very unique situation.


I remember the relief that comes with that tiny cry and I remember being filled with sheer, overwhelming joy. I laughed and cried, at the same time. Honestly, it is the closet thing to what motherhood is; profound bliss and heartbreaking misery all in one fell swoop but worth every single moment of it. I would have endured 10,000 unmedicated transition labors just to glimpse your face once.


Since my Bella was born, I have spent every moment dreading the moment when she grows up and leaves. That truly is the irony of loving something so much, one day, if you truly love it, you must let it go. That’s the part that scares me because I love my children so much and so fiercely ( like all mothers) that the thought of growing up and letting go guts me every time.



So, per usual, I find myself celebrating this amazing child that I had the privilege of bringing into this world and retain the honor of loving on a daily basis and simultaneously, sad because a decade has gone by in a flash. She’s halfway to leaving me.


I don’t know how I will handle it when the time comes. I suppose I will rage in my way against the letting go but I will never let her know because this is how it’s supposed to go. They come into our lives, make us better people, we raise them and love them and then send them out into the world to follow their dreams.

Seven, birthday,kids birthday


Staying behind like a beacon of light or a soft place to land. If we do our job, they won’t need us anymore but they will still want us. We are their home, and always will be, just as we were when they grew in our womb. No one ever tells you that while it’s happening, they have entangled themselves inside your heart like a tumor and will remain there forever.

birthday, slumber party

My dearest Bella,

Today is your golden birthday. You are a 10-years-old, my sweet girl. Today, your father and I have been parents for 3, 650 days. You made us better people. You made us a family. I love you more than mere words could ever convey. It’s silly to even try to verbalize what our hearts feel for you.

Bella, Frozen, Birthday Party, Elsa, Olaf, Anna, Cristophe


You are amazing, courageous, independent, intelligent,funny, charismatic, beautiful on the inside and out and one of the kindest, most caring girls I have ever known. You can be and do anything you want to in this world. Don’t you forget that, ever. I am so proud to be your mother. I love you to the moon and back, I love you more than that. Thank you for letting me love you. Happy Golden birthday, baby! I hope it is as amazing as you are, my sweet.



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