Thursday, September 29, 2011

Preface: Where Babies Come From

five days old, millions of years in the making.
Our story, yours and mine, begins as so many stories do, with a girl and a boy. Not just one set of girl and boy, though, but with hundreds of couples who came together to make new life, reaching through time and space back to an ancient place, oh-so-long ago. We are the outcome of an infinite number of other people's choices and a whole lot of grace. Allow your mind to wander back through the generations, tracing your way through the delicate, intricate path that brought your being into the world, and then you try to tell me that the things that people do don't matter. Our decisions matter precious much, not just to those alive today, but to all those who are to come. The ripples we ripple reach farther than we can see. Never doubt your importance in the grand scheme of things.

In love or indifference, in lust or intoxicated, in the traditional bed or the back of a car, our parents got down and we sprung into being. Our bodies began as two distinctly different pieces of organic matter, each vibrating with millions of years of intelligence and information. We were all born of an ovum that was grown inside our mother when she was growing inside our grandmother, and so on and so forth. The ovum that became us called forth the most worthy contribution from our fathers, our two original pieces fusing and immediately beginning to multiply. The intelligence inherent in our tiny early beings unfolded, each bone and muscle, organ and nerve forming from clusters of cells each containing a blueprint to build our perfect bodies. Considering all the things that could go wrong in the process of our development, it's incredible that the human body is so uniform and that we end up here at all. There's a reason it's called "the miracle of life." You are a part of that.

There is nothing "ordinary" about you. For all our incredible uniformity, every human being really is a unique snowflake. Even identical twins have different fingerprints. When you look at yourself in the mirror, you can beam with pride at the fact that you are the only you that ever was and will be. The ripples rippled by ancient ancestors reached out across unfathomable distance to create you, and the ripples you ripple with every heartbeat and breath are creating the future.

That's how babies are made- not by "accident," although it may seem like it at the time. Babies are the product of infinite choices across lifetimes. There is nothing accidental about any of us. You really are quite special. You are a miracle.

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