I Remember The First

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Anonymous

I remember the first time I saw you -unborn- on that black and white screen, hardly there at all, and I loved you.

I remember feeling the first kick inside me, wildly exciting and beautiful.

I remember the first time I held you- feeling too young and unprepared, and so in love.

I remember the first time you called me “Mommy”, standing in your crib. It could have been a sonnet.

I remember the first time a teacher pointed out that you were different. And ignoring her.

I remember the first time you fell and I was so afraid you were hurt.

I remember the first time you hurt me with your words, "No, I don't love you, Mommy", and knowing you meant it.

I remember the first time I accepted what the experts had said- and understanding that this was our reality.

I remember the first time a friend said her son did not want to play with you, because he could tell you were different.

I remember the first time you were able to walk into that big school building yourself, I was surprised.

I remember the first time you cried to us, "Why is it always ME they pick on?"

I remember the first time you rode a bike- your determination surprising us all.

I remember the first time I realized that your outward look -so normal and able- can make life just as hard as it may make things easier.

I remember the first time I fully realized things were only getting harder.

I remember the first time, of so many, a well-meaning relative asked why you need all this help- you seem so 'fine'.

I remember the first time you performed in front of a crowd, my pride rivaled only by your own.

I remember the first time I cried myself to sleep, exhausted from worrying about you.

I remember the first time you went to camp, thrilled for you, and guiltily thrilled for me.

I remember the first time you ran away from home.

I'll never forget it.

I'll never forget the first time I was afraid of you.

I'll never forget the first time I had to choose to protect your siblings, rather than comfort you.

I'll never forget the first time I questioned if we'll be able to manage this alone.

I never want to forget the first time you kissed your baby sister.

I never want to forget the first time your smile broke my heart.

I never want to forget how proud you made us... on the days when all I want is to forget.

 

**To reach out to the author of this poem, please send an email to Rochel@nashimmagazine.com with the subject line “contact I remember the first” and your message will be forwarded.

Rochel Lazar