I lost my ATM card in a nonfunctional machine because I neglected to check the screen, which read "WORTHLESS BANK IS GOOD FOR NOTHING, PARTICULARLY WHEN ASKED TO DISPENSE ADMITTEDLY PALTRY FUNDS. WILL EAT CARD NOW."
Um, let's see ... I made a sandwich. That was pretty good.
Geez, what else was there? Seems like I'm forgetting something.
Holy crap, people. Remember this, and how it was 400 years ago, give or take?
It all led up to yesterday.
Stella Marie Juarez, born 7:48 a.m. November 3, 2009. Full head of black hair, 6 pounds, 6 ounces, 19 inches long, 13 3/8 inches of head.
Seven family members, alternately cooing in reverence and stunned into silence, like being chucked in the temple with awe.
One diaper change, expertly executed by an old pro.
Twenty dollars plunked down for decorations, meant to announce to the world that the Fin family loves with abandon and isn't afraid to declare their joy in felt and ribbon that puts the rest of the hospital to shame. You know, if it were a competition or something.
Twelve visiting hours, absurdly too few to satisfy greedy visitors or to contain my Tourette's-style compulsion to screech, "Stop bogarting the baby!" even though I just held her 14 seconds ago.
Ten perfect fingers, 10 perfect toes.
One mama, punch drunk on breathless wonder and sleep deprivation and the throat-catching charge of feeling your magnetic field widen to include a whole new orbit.
Stella, I promise to spoil you beyond the bounds of imagination. I promise to pick you up when you cry and faint dead away when you smile at me for the first time. I promise to read to you and leave the hallway light on at night and play the panicked clown when you skin your knees. I promise to let you lick the bowl. I promise to sing to you. I promise to keep your secrets and buy you beer and never, ever let you drive my car. I promise to make you wear a coat when I'm cold. I promise to let you be silly and loud and angry and sad and jealous and excited and afraid.
I promise to be as proud of you every day as I was yesterday, as proud as I am of your beautiful sisters, proud of your mother and her mother and the gentle way she helped you try to eat, three generations of powerful women, powerful purpose, powerful life force.
I promise to teach you hyperbole.
I hope you will teach me, too—how to be more brave, more certain. How to hold you like your grandfather does, serene and grinning, like the center of the world's most joyous storm.
I promise to help keep you safe and to love you, fiercely, just as you are. Because thanks to your parents, what you are is perfection—it's in your DNA. Welcome to the world, baby girl.