It is the 22nd of January. I am in Savusavu with Mum. 7 kilometers out of town. On an island North East of home. With 5 dogs from next-door, who love ear scratches on the verandah.
Savusavu is lime and aqua and afternoon breezes. We snack and sleep and sing. Adele came for the adventure. Beyonce pops her head in every now again.
January is a tough month for us. It has been for 6 years.
But … you don’t know anything about that. Which brings me glowing joy.
See bub, I have been writing ‘Dear Bubba’ letters for a long time. Except, this is my first one to you, baby girl.
You have been growing in my belly for 16 weeks today. You are the size of an avocado according to my pregnancy app. You squirm and kick and have fingernails. I hope you don’t get too bored in there. I hope you like the food I’ve been feeding you. And that you are getting really strong.
If you can hear me and nanna talking, listen to the laughter and the stories. Most are pretty funny. Truth is, over the past few months, maybe you have heard me crying too.
So, I am writing to tell you not to worry.
It’s a strange thing when your life changes overnight. You feel like one of those glass winter snow balls that someone has picked up and shook with all their might. Only when it is placed back on the mantelpiece, white flakes drifting over the miniature chimneys and lawns, do you see that it’s so much more beautiful than when it was left stagnant.
Honestly, I have let my heart hide since I found out about you. I haven’t written any blogs or songs, imagined any fairytales, or painted my nails gold. (Well – I actually still won’t paint my nails bub, because my friend Tracey said it’s best not to put toxic products on myself while you are still rolly polling inside. Totally cool.)
I wasn’t sure what my heart needed to be anymore. I have been afraid of disappointing the people who you and I need now. Confusing those who maybe don’t understand why I have my diary on the Internet. Why magic is so important to my soul. How words and pictures make me feel like it’s fluttering out of me. Being brought to life.
I have been afraid of losing dreams of combi vans and my acoustic afternoons, fighting for the world I believe in, traveling to all the other Pacific Islands to help spread stories and hope.
I started letting the golden core of my spine melt a little. I thought, did it matter anymore? Maybe everything I am and believe is just a trendy crocheted cliche to be picked apart.
But as I said bub don’t worry. I am not afraid now.
I felt you move.
My heart is not hiding. It is full. I hope you can hear it. Like a leather drum beating in the mountains, surrounded by children playing in trees, with monkeys in ruby necklaces perched on their tanned silk shoulders.
The magic is just beginning.
There are so many people waiting to meet you. You have the most generous kindest grandparents whose lives you are going to light up. They have coconut groves, tropical rivers, and Australian gardens ready for you to explore.
You have aunts and uncles all over the planet who will smother you in love. Some biological, some not, some crazy, some crazier.
(You do also have a beautiful uncle in waiting, my babiest brother Cormac, who intends on using you to help him meet girls. We will discuss this further when the time comes.)
You have another uncle. The original Bubba.
He is your angel and will take care of your skies while we all watch you on the land.
Don’t worry, We Got This.
Just over a year ago I sat next to your daddy by a bonfire. We were on a tiny beach island in the Mamanucas. It was 2am and there was a DJ and flashing lights and dancing bodies to our left. Auntie Chloe was asleep on the sand after a midnight swim to our right.
I told your daddy that I had nothing to give him yet. That all I wanted was my friends, family and freedom. I just wanted to swim in Fiji. I asked him if he would still be my friend.
(Sometimes he can be very grown up your dad.)
He said, “We got this.”
There’s more to give now. And another little person to give it to. You.
And we still got this.
So sleep well. Dream calm. Can’t wait to meet you bub.
Just beautiful Matisse. That little coconut smelling golden ray of sunshine will be so lucky to live in your world. You and everyone around you have so much love to give. We’re in this together…we’ve got this!
Sending lots of love, hugs and kisses your way as you dream of little bub to come, from auntie Mara.
A heart-warming prose which is very moving and yet sagacious. Congratulations Matisse and all the very best for 2016 and beyond xxx
How fabulous. Please keep writing as I am looking forward to going on this journey with you. Love and best wishes.