Years prior to Riley's birth, I had a powerful dream. I was being whisked through the ocean waters by a little otter, whom I LOVED beyond description. It was such a blissful, amazing experience that I woke up and wrote it all down. I didn't know that kind of joy was even possible. I was single, living in DC at the time. I briefly referred to the dream in a piece that was published last year in Literary Mama.
In June of 2000, I had a very traumatic 26 hour labor experience with Riley. I wound up with a C-section, but the epidural didn't take on one side, and I felt them cut into me to get her out. It was hell. In the recovery room, the nurses were pressing on my stomach to contract the uterus back down, not realizing I wasn't numb. I was too weak to speak and they couldn't hear my whispery pleas. I could feel my spirit leaving my body. I was sure I was dying.
Two hours after her birth, when they gave her to me, all of that disappeared and I was flooded with the body memory of the sea otter dream.
It was her.
My friend Mary Ellen sent this today, completely unaware of its significance to me.
Watching it, I relive that day, certain Riley and I were aquainted long before June of 2000.