Baby was her Name
Lifes lights and shadows highlight Baby’s fear, all alone in a nightmare world.
For so long, Baby felt unwanted, afraid to open up, always feeling inferior amongst her classmates, and when she became old enough; her feelings of inferiority were wrapped all around her, due to her insecurities her co-workers always took advantage of her timid softness.
If only someone would have taught Baby how to be strong, strong enough to step over her fears in life. Strong enough to be honest and humble about herself. Strong enough to forgive her own shortcomings, and to love herself for who she is. Strong enough to live without anger, or too much wrongful pride; knowing she is the same as anyone else . . .human.
She dated, but there wasn’t ever a relationship formed, she was awkward around the opposite sex, always happier at home, with a good book or a movie, she felt safe in her sheltering shell that she had built around herself.
At home Baby was the only face in the crowd, there were no expectations that she had to live up to in order to fit in. She could be herself behind her closed door, but that was part of the problem, she didn’t know who she was really; she was adopted when she was about ten, leaving her life a mystery.
One day Baby was sitting on her couch watching her television, and watching her life slowly unravel day by day. The show she was watching was a documentary on abortions, she never felt abortions were right; but she found herself wishing that her life would have been ended that way. Life was never the same as her classmates at school, foster-homes never offered the stability she needed; her adoptive parents could never offer the answers to the questions she always had festering inside.
All Baby could do was muddle through each and every day doing the best that she could, but it always seemed like the more common sense things escaped her, people always wanting her to fit in to some form of life; a life that never meshed with what she was feeling deep inside her soul.
Baby talked to Counselors at school, if she went to the doctors office for some reason, she would ask questions of the doctor; none of the answers that she received gave her any internal peace. It was the lack of internal peace that she was feeling that made her wish her birth mother would have chosen an abortion; rather than letting her go through the pain of life she was living with, it was her mothers mistake, it’s not my mistake; Baby always felt that she was the aftermath of two people’s failed relationship.
Then one day at work she made a mistake, nothing bad, just a mistake that could be fixed. But with her past years of insecurity she became very hard on herself, even her boss wasn’t that strict on her.
Her coworker watched her, Baby was mumbling to herself in fear of losing her job. Hey Baby, slow down, take a breath, you know God gave you the same tools as he gave everyone, he means for us all to succeed in our lives; it just depends on what we do with the tools we are given, and fear is not one of the tools.
Baby went home, all the way home she thought of what her co-worker had told her. Once home she sat down to a cup of tea, she started exploring everything about herself; all of her likes and dislikes, her accomplishments and failures. She spent the night thinking, pondering, kicking out the bad thoughts, replacing them with better thoughts.
All her life she was told that she didn’t have what it took, she wasn’t any good. But as she went over what she wrote on the pad of paper, she saw that she did have what it took, she had accomplishments in her life, she was far better than she had been giving herself credit for. It became apparently clear to Baby, that she was worth the effort of self nurturing and a change in the way that she views her life; from that moment on, Baby was going to not focus on her past while she changed her life for the better.
The next day after work had ended, the timecard had been punched, Baby went to the community college, she signed up for some art classes, and before she knew it, she had become an artist that sold paintings in local restaurants, and in other businesses around town. She set up display booths at craft fairs, one day at one of the local fairs, a lady came up telling her how much she loved Baby’s paintings.
Baby was humble about her work, simply signed and dated in the lower right corner, in a fitting less flamboyant style; just signed Baby and the date.
The lady showed great interest in the name on the painting, asking why the name Baby?
Baby took some time for the lady, she had been busy all morning with customers and other crafters, Baby sat down, took a drink from her Caramel Macchiato that a friend had brought her.
When I was born, my mother gave me up for adoption, when they asked what she would have named me, she told them that my name should be Baby. I think she thought the name would put distance between her and I; and it did, like if you name a barnyard animal with a name, it’s harder to kill it and eat it, Baby was an innocuous name. Baby said with a smile.
The lady paid for her new picture, for Baby, it was a fifteen hundred dollar sale, the lady then asked where Baby was born, Baby told her, in Providence on the east side. Then the lady asked if Baby had a website, Baby gave her a card, and the picture after she wrapped it for the lady to take home. The lady told Baby that she was beautiful young lady, then left with her picture in hand.
A week passed since the fair, Baby was going through her e-mails, there was an email from the lady that she had sold the painting to at the fair. Baby was too humble to think the lady was a fan of her artwork, or that her paintings were going to be hung next to the Van Gogh or O’Keeffe paintings in the local art museum, but she did have a thought that there might be another sale sitting in the unopened email; thinking to herself that if she sold another painting that she would have a very nice month.
It was such a pleasure to finally meet you, and to have such a fine conversation with you; I have waited a long time to do so.
You are quite a refreshing young lady, and so much a pleasure to converse with, but it wasn’t happenstance that I came to your booth, I have read the articles about you; and a local dealer told me that you would be showing your art at the fair.
I am so sorry I didn’t have the nerve to tell you who I was while talking to you, you were busy and I was honestly too scared.
But, Dear Baby, I am your mother, I loved you all the way through the pregnancy, and silently every day since, but I couldn’t bring you and I up at the same time due to the way I had been living my life; I was so thankful to God that you were healthy, he kept you from being born a Blue-Baby, something I could not have survived the guilt of. Baby, you would have been just about to graduate high school by the time I took control of my addictions. I thought you would have a better chance with someone that could love you with an honest love. I wish there was a way to fix the time lost in the past, but I can’t, maybe with God’s grace in another time. I hope you can find forgiveness for me, if not, I will understand; and simply revel in the thought that for at least a few moments in our lives, I got the chance to at least talk to my daughter. Something I thought I would never have the chance to do.
The lady gave Baby her phone number and email address, then bid Baby goodbye without expectation; Baby’s mother felt that she didn’t deserve a second chance, such a chance was in Baby’s control.
Baby didn’t know what to think about the email, she must have read it fifty times in the passing days and weeks, uncertainty was a big part of Baby’s hesitation. Forgiveness is huge at times like this, it’s hard to summon up, and even harder to give, but her mother did say that she had addictions at the time of Baby’s birth. And she did buy a painting for fifteen hundred dollars, not that that could sway anything, but Baby looked deep into her own soul, a soul that was once confused and scared, and all that she had gone through to break free from the shell she had been hiding in throughout her young life..
Baby thought and thought, she ran her fingers through her hair then took a deep breath as she looked up at the light fixture hanging down from the ceiling; God, what am I going to do? You’ve got to help me understand and decide what I should do!
Baby’s attention turned to the tree outside her window, a Fall breeze was blowing some leaves from the spindly branches, at that moment she wondered aloud, would the tree forgive the wind for the stripping it of its golden leaves; she was reminded of a quote she learned somewhere in her past “The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
Baby reopened the email from her mother, took a deep breath; then dialed the number….