fifteen years ago today I gave birth to my only child, my daughter. It was a difficult pregnancy, as I went into premature labor at twenty-six weeks when she weighed about two and a half pounds. In 1989 there was very little chance of survival at that stage and I spent the next eight weeks in a perpetual state of high alert. With the help of the midwives and the medical staff at the University of Michigan hospitals I managed to hold on to her until just two weeks shy of my due date.
She came into the world on May 5 at 9:10 in the morning, by c-section, rounded and pink and squalling, five pounds, twelve ounces.
Three years from this spring she’ll be graduating from high school and getting ready to go off to college. This great adventure, this raising of a daughter, will enter a new phase and we will watch and worry from afar, and assure each other that she is doing well, that she will turn to us when she needs us, that we made the most of her childhood and adolescence, and most of all, that she’ll come home to see us not because she needs to, but because she likes us, and wants to. That’s my wish, on her birthday.