I will never hold you,
never count your perfect hands and toes
or smooth away your downy hair from your wrinkled face.
I will never feel your grip and be proud of your strength.
I will never hear you cry,
wanting what only I can give,
comfort, warmth, sustenance.
I will never decorate your nursery
or pick out baby clothes.
I will never know what you feel like, smell like,
your wants and needs.
I won’t watch you grow,
be proud at your achievements,
and worry for your safety.
I won’t cry on your first day of daycare,
wondering if you’ll be alright.
Share your first Christmas, overdo your first birthday.
Worry about sending you to college.
I will never sing to you until you fall asleep,
talk to you about drugs, sex, friendship, love,
laugh and cry with you.
Hear you call me mama for the first time.
I will never hug you, comfort you,
or get to teach you right from wrong.
I will never fret when you get your first cold,
your first crush, your first heartbreak.
I won’t even give you a name,
hear your heart beat for the first time,
or know whether you’re a boy or girl.
But I will remember you and keep you in my heart.
You will be remembered because I will never forget.