My daughter, Liana, arrived at 2:54 in the morning, on September 7, 2018, less than three hours from the start of contractions. According to the American Pregnancy Association, rapid labor is characterized by labor that can last as little as three hours, also known as precipitous labor. I had never heard of this term prior to my own experience. I was blindly catapulted into an earth-shattering rebirth with little to no warning. And without medication to help ease the sensation, I muster up the strength and weave through the pain all on my own. Her birth was the catalyst of my death; I was reborn alongside her as a mother, and that was just the beginning. Life before birth had me running in circles on a people-pleasing path of self-destruction. My voice was silenced, and I felt disempowered to take ownership of my circumstances. And although it was painful, it felt like the path of least resistance up until my daughter was born. There was no other option than to leave my former-self behind and rebuild from the ground up.
Three months later, I was losing a battle with postpartum depression. My relationship with Liana’s father was fully derailed. Drowning in vulnerabilities, it felt as if my solid ground had been replaced by a choppy sea of oversized waves. I pack my life into 13 boxes as if I was a professional at Tetris, drop them off at a Greyhound station, and numbly board a plane with my daughter securely strapped to my chest. My heart made a choice that my mind didn’t (want to) agree with. This decision went against everything I had ever known from my childhood; I chose to be a single parent. I felt as if I had no other option but to leave that relationship. I was living for Liana now and she needed a secure foundation that resided in love, and so did I.
Peeling back the layers to expose raw moments of pain, fear, and heartbreak, I was quickly initiated into the full spectrum of motherhood. Throughout the last four and a half years, I’ve confronted ignored wounds and found the courage to gaze deeply at myself in the mirror. I have regained my footing and started to root back into fertile soil, where I will continue to plant new seeds; sometimes the foundation has to be lifted to reset for a more sustainable future.
My rebirth came with a much-needed death to a life I once lived. I lock eyes with discomfort and welcome the growth that follows close behind. Liana and I traveled to the depths of the unknown together and have blossomed into our own biggest fans. I was born as a mother on the day I gave birth to my daughter
Out here in the dry salt flats of Nevada, time stands still. The air is thick and dust filled. I draw a line on the windshield of my car in the exact same spot everyday to watch how many layers of dust settle here. A lingering stench of what I would imagine a bag of…
Rapid Rebirth pt. 2
“Matt, Matt, wake up. I think something’s happening,” I whispered as I hunched my nude body over the side of our bed. I was dropping in and out of reality, and riding this new awareness of sensation. I felt bones shifting, muscles contracting, and electrical impulses dancing up and down my spine. This shockwave was…
Rapid Rebirth pt. 1
Holding onto the edge of the hospital bed, I release low and guttural groans as I drop deeper into my physical body. I have been preparing for this moment for the last nine months, and now that it’s here, I am trying to catch my breath. There is no pause, no break, no moment to…
Leave a Reply