Love at First Sight?

Would I fall in love instantly?  Just take a single look at her and know that we were meant to be?  Or would it be harder, take time?  What if she didn't love me?

I'd fallen in love before.  But not like this.  This time falling in love wasn't about meeting my husband and walking down the aisle.  It wouldn't happen in a bar or over long talks in the middle of the night. 

This time it would happen -- was supposed to happen -- the minute the layed her on my chest, seconds after she was born.

In the weeks leading up to the birth of my daughter, I thought a lot about falling in love.  It was a strange thing, not one mentioned in the pregnancy books or that I'd planned to really worry about as I was washing baby clothes and tying up loose ends at work.  I knew I'd love my baby, but being in love is a different matter of the heart.  And maybe it was pregnancy hormones, but I had serious worries about her loving me.

The strange thing is, I loved her before she was born.  Loved the idea, the dream of the baby we'd have one day as we struggled to get pregnant.  Loved her the minute I knew that this time was different, that it had worked and I was pregnant, before any test confirmed my suspiction.  And as she grew inside me, I loved her.  And it was all consuming -- the love tinged with worry and excitement, every movement a celebration and every day bringing us one day closer to meeting.

And that was it -- I loved her but we hadn't even met, hadn't had a chance to look at each other, to hold hands.  And silly as it may seem, that's important to someone who fell in love with her husband party because he held her hand even while they were sleeping! 

There was so much love surrounding me in the time leading up to the baby arriving, from friends and family, from strangers who smile and hold open doors for a pregnant woman waddling her way down the sidewalk.  It was amazing to soak it all in, to be falling more in love with my husband and I watched him get ready to become a daddy.  But I didn't mention to anyone my thoughts and fears about what it would be like to love this baby in the real world -- the one where we'd meet face to face.  And I'll admit it wondered if I'd be a bad mom because I'd had this worry.  But the fact was I never doubted that I'd love her, continue loving her as I had for more than 39 weeks -- I only wondered what it would be like to be in love with my daughter and have her love in return.

And when it finally happened, when they put her on my chest..  There was no perfect outfit or make-up in site, there was only a crying, healthy, gunky baby and a sweaty and overwhelmed mommy.  It was without thought, the feeling that my heart truly grew in the moment that we looked at each other, seeing each other for the first time. 

I know that she won't remember that moment, even when we show her pictures and tell her about the day she was born.  But I'll never forget it -- it was love at first sight.  This was my great love story.






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