Wearing My Heart on the Outside of My Body

melissa curtin Feb 04, 2022

February is Heart Month. I’ll be writing about the heart this month and forevermore. 

As I sat down to start writing, I immediately began thinking about who and what has touched my heart the most in my life and my daughter, Aubrey, came immediately to my mind and heart.

I hadn’t decided (consciously I suppose) to have a child, yet I found myself surprised to be growing one at age 24 after getting married just six months earlier. (I think our family and friends were pretty surprised, too!)

I remember being pregnant and reading a similar quote to the one below:

Making the decision to have a child - it is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.  - Elizabeth Stone, Author

I recall thinking, “That’s terrifying.” I had no idea what I was getting myself into but I was about to find out.

Having a child at that age for me is one of many examples of my being better off not knowing what I didn’t know because had I waited much longer, I’m not sure I would have ever made the conscious decision to become a parent. 

I raised Aubrey pretty much on my own from when she was two years old. We’ve had a lot of amazing adventures together, and she’s had many adventures on her own - some of them are pretty darned funny. 

This morning while I was getting ready for work, Aubrey FaceTimed me from her office locker room.  She had gone to Orangetheory Fitness before work for a free workout they offered to try it out. She had forgotten to pack a towel, a bra, panties, and a blow dryer. 

She was in the locker room drying herself off with paper towels, upset that she had a new client meeting this morning and that she would have to put her sweaty sports bra back on and show up with wet hair. 

“What was I thinking?!,” she yelled in frustration at herself.  “I packed last night and I can’t believe I forgot all of this!” 

Classic Aubrey. I just laughed. (I’ll save the story about how she accidentally shaved off her eyebrow in the shower for another time.) 

Shortly after we hung up, I received this text from her: 

I was so nervous going in this morning [to Orangetheory Fitness] by myself but I just thought about how you would just do it and go out there and have fun and do what you could do. Thanks for that. ❤️❤️

I sat down in my bathroom and cried - tears of joy, pride, and gratitude. 

Aubrey has always had a strong will, a mind of her own, and the conviction to stand in her own power. 

Little does she know that it’s mostly thanks to the gift of getting to be her mom that I learned to stand in my power along the way.  

Aubrey has brought me more joy than I could have ever known possible. She’s a beautiful, vibrant, funny, savvy, and fiery woman who is out there taking on the world, just as I dreamed she would. 

As I write this, I feel the familiar heart sense that belongs to her and 26.5 years later, it still feels like my heart is walking around outside of my body, all the way to San Antonio, TX.  

I pray every day that we have many more adventures in this life together and that one day I’ll get to witness her experience her heart walking around the outside of her body, too.



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