I told our little girl spirit our plan. She responded by telling me what she wanted to be named and insisted that we give her initials of BLISS. “I will be with you on your birthday,” she said. I acknowledged her and the agreement was made.
I never came to a place of intellectual reconciliation, but I did come to a place of peace about my choice to move forward. I could not argue that others had no business breeding children and then breed myself. My only comfort was that as far as I knew I had never met anyone who consciously waited as long as I had to have a child and who had put as much thought into the social and political ramifications, to say nothing of the personal, than I had. This somehow made me feel different enough to justify being an exception to the rule. I didn’t think I was worthy of being an exception but I felt I was and thoughts and feelings can be very separate things.
I kept flashing back on a heated philosophical discussion I had with my brother-in-law in the early 1990s. We were writing a screenplay together that touched on this area. He was writing the voices of the moderate to conservative characters, and I was writing the dialogue for the liberal perspective. For every reason he gave in favor of breeding I would give him two in favor of not. Exasperated he finally just put his head in his hands, and after a few silent moments looked up at me with tears in his eyes and said one word, “Desire.”
He went on to explain that for better or worse, right or wrong, he had a desire to have children and no amount of intellectual facts or figures was diminishing that sense of calling in him. If anything, it was only making it stronger. There was nothing I could say to argue against him. I felt I had a calling in my life to be an artist and I couldn’t fathom someone trying to take that away from me so how could I argue it away in him?
He had the last word in that debate, and it was a powerful one that has stayed with me ever since. He ended up having three beautiful, bright children who I can’t imagine not having in my life.
But alas, I did not share his desire. I did not feel that need, urgency, or calling to give birth to a child in order to be a mother. This only made me question even more if it was something I should even be considering. Comic Betsy Salkind refers to breeding as genetic narcissism. It was that very line that bonded us as friends because I had also used that concept in my play. How could I believe that breeding was genetic narcissism and yet still be considering participating in it?
It didn’t feel like narcissism to me. The BLISS baby was her own unique entity. She did not really feel like an extension of me. She felt more like a friend I cared deeply for who I shared a lot in common with and who I enjoyed being around.
Have you ever had a strong opinion about something and then met a really nice likeable person who held the exact opposite opinion as you? Well, it was kind of like that for me juggling my philosophical beliefs with my BLISS baby spirit visits. The BLISS baby of my dreams kept coming back to me and with each visit she brought out a little more desire from me for her, in spite of my beliefs.
I began to form a friendship with her like I would with anyone who I heard from on a daily basis. I learned her likes and dislikes, her hopes and fears and more of why she had come to me specifically. She told me that we had always been together as spirits, and now we had an opportunity to be together as two physical beings as well.
She showed me pictures of our life together. I was able to view a movie in my dreams of her performing as a comic on a college campus. In a wakeful vision, I saw her with her husband and children at my death bed. She introduced me to two other children—a boy and a girl who also wanted to be born to us—and they told us their names as well.
She had a great sense of humor, loved music, had a determined spirit, was super smart, and had a passion for learning. I could see what she looked like clearly: light eyes and curly hair with a beautiful smile, nothing like me at all. I shared these details with my dearest friends and my best friend, my husband. He began to see her too and have brief encounters with her during moments of meditation.
As the days turned into months, my birthday was just around the corner. Inviting the BLISS baby to become our daughter no longer felt like a political or social issue about breeding, over population and unwanted children in foster care. It became about finally meeting this spirit in person who we had come to know through our dreams.
When my birthday arrived, the day of the deed, I felt like she was in the room with us which was both awkward and yet also somehow spiritually magnificent.
It was a wonderfully romantic experience and not far from movie magic where it’s easy to forget what’s a documentary and what’s based solely on fantasy. It was beyond an exciting voyage to consciously choose to create life and still not know if it would be successful, not to mention carrying the pressure of living up to the agreement we made to only try once. What if it didn’t take? Would we ever meet the BLISS baby?
I felt a bit like Tom Burdet in the Motel 6 commercial saying, “I’ll leave the light on for you.” She must have had a GPS system installed in her DNA because she never even paused for directions. We conceived that night, and five months later ultra sounds confirmed that it was indeed a girl.
I immediately felt that her personality was already completely developed and I was just the vessel that she was coming through. I was so completely certain of this that I wrote a public description of her in our baby shower invitations before she was ever born which later turned out to be entirely accurate.
There once was a flower of a little girl spirit. Over the course of infinite soul years and thirty-seven earthly weeks, she made her caterpillar to butterfly transition from the ethereal into the physical. She was expected around Christmas and was born around Thanksgiving just like she had been in my dreams for seventeen years. She was the perfect holiday gift.
My husband’s last name is Bailey. My last name is Smith. She asked for initials of BLISS so we named her Bailey, Love, Isabella, Sage, Smith. She has five names to choose from, two of which are fairly typical another that is common and two new age, spiritual, dreamlike names for the new age, spiritual, dreamlike child that she is. She will carry forth both her mother and her father’s heritage, and she got her wish for initials of B.L.I.S.S.
Now I am being visited by the other two spirit children as well, but again I find myself in a state of mystification. I cannot comprehend on an intellectual level the reality of having two more children whether through breeding, adoption or any means really. I feel so completely overwhelmed with just one child. But I continue to forge the family ties on the spiritual realm and leave the reality of manifesting on the physical plain to unforeseen sources of influence that may come into play. Perhaps those of fulltime help with cooking, cleaning, laundry, shopping and childcare.
For now our world is content with Bailey. She is everything I literally imagined and more. She is our greatest joy, our bliss, our dream child.
Names have been changed to protect privacy but do connote symbolic likeness.