Me at 18. Would I know that in ten years from then, I would be having a child with the beautiful man who took this photo?

Dearest Little One,

When we first learned about you at five weeks, I found a pregnancy book that said your heart was the size of a poppy seed.

I know it’s bigger than that now – much, much bigger – perhaps the size of a hundred poppy seeds… but still I think of your little poppy seed heart, beating so softly and strongly.

If the ocean was created by anything – with all its swells and creatures and blue and green – I think it would have been made by a heart.

Your little poppy seed heart has made an ocean of life and love, and everyday its surges wash into our lives.

I remember a couple of months ago when I hadn’t felt you move at all.

First, the softest, gentlest tugging around your belly. So soft you think there is a small muscle tightening and releasing… and then you realise the muscle isn’t yours, and although is inside you, is independent of you.

And it was you.

Maybe that’s what motherhood is all about. I can be the safest, most loving harbour I can be, and you will be your own ship, sailing where you need to be and how your heart delights you.

I want you to know already that I am proud of you, and that I honour your choices. Whatever you need for you is holy and sacred. However your heart delights you is profound.

Yesterday, your Daddy & I were having morning tea together, and we were talking about what we most wanted for you.

And most of all – the very most of all – the things I wanted to give you most for your life was for you to know that you are loved unconditionally, that everything will be okay, and that you can do what you want to do and make your big dreams happen. I hope we can give you so much more too – a love and connection to the earth and its animals, a joy for creativity and however you want to express yourself, and a belief that will hold you, nourish you, sustain you, inspire you and guide you.

But most of all, we want you to know how perfect you are, just as you are, and that you are loved so deeply.

I remember watching a video of a pregnacious goddess who was videoing her full-moon belly, showing the little one bouncing and dancing and pressing against her skin.

And I thought: Wow: that must happen when you are just about ready to pop!

And then, as it does, pregnancy takes you on your own special journey.

And you started pressing against my skin, making the curve of my belly shift… working your way up to full-mermaid rolls against my skin.

You are so close to being in this world. You feel more like a real person with a real body every day now.

I place my hand over my belly, and feel your head, back, bum, legs pressing against me. Only a couple of centimetres away you are – maybe less. A fraction of the universe.

And I get all teary that I have my hand against my own daughter’s.

I get your daddy to press his warm, soft hands against you too… and he smiles that magical smile of his.

We watch together as my belly moves in waves.

Soon you will be here. Soon, your hand will be pressed against mine.

I worry again and again that you might be breech, that I may somehow have caused it, that I have to fix it, that a caesarean may be the way you are brought into the world.

Over and over again, I have to let go of what I think needs to happen. I have to let go of thinking I can control any part of this. I have to let go of all the parts of me that don’t flow as soft and smooth as a river stone. My rough edges and my hardness are getting knocked away by the tumbling river.

And I give all this up…

because of you.

I let go of so much,

because you are the true gift,

the thing most worth reaching for.

I let go of making it all happen, and invite space instead for allowing all that is.

I let go of being an ambitious workaholic, and invite the cave of mamahood. I dive deeper into the sensations of you, my body, of life and spirit encapsulated in skin.

I choose to have faith as big as a mountain, and courage as strong as a lion.

And I choose to step into grace. To allow light to soak over both of us.

To allow Great Spirit to scoop us up into the palm of its loving hand, and whisper to us:

This is where you need to be. This is perfect for you both. You are so, so, so very loved.

And so it is.

It is all a gift.

Dearest daughter, if we have a caesarean, I will call it an EC – an Ecstatic Caesarean. If we have a vaginal birth, I will call it an Ecstatic Vaginal Birth.

The direction the journey takes doesn’t matter – it will always be in the Land of Ecstasy.

Because the Ecstasy is bringing you – you, with all your gifts, beauty, light and you-ness, into this world.

As big and scary as the journey of mamahood will be,

I know already this is the very best of the best that has ever happened to me.

I love you,

and I thank you,