My heart, her skin

“Mommy, are birthmarks pieces of a mommy’s heart?”

We had just read books and said prayers after a conversation about beauty marks and freckles and moles. (“I’m going to count your freckles, Mommy. Wait, no, you have way too many.” This is true. I have A LOT of freckles.)

Her question made me pause for a second, knowing this sentiment sounded familiar — I just needed a moment to place it. And then I remembered.

Mia has a birthmark on the inside of her ankle. The technical term for this type of birthmark is called a cafe au lait spot, and for good reason. It looks like a coffee stain. (“Cafe au lait” is French for “coffee with milk”.)

In an instant, I remembered a conversation Mia and I had a couple of years ago regarding her birthmark. She wanted to know where it came from. How did it get there? I told her that when she was in my belly, she reached up at the last second with her tiny baby hands and ripped off a piece of my heart with her tiny baby fingernails to carry with her for always.

“But how did it get on my ankle?” she wanted to know.

“I guess because you didn’t have pockets on you at the time. You were in a hurry because you knew how excited I was to meet you and so you pressed it to your skin like a sticker and went on your way.”

I don’t recall ever revisiting this story until last night when I told her the same version. Considering that it’s scientifically unclear what causes birthmarks, is it really so far-fetched?


11 thoughts on “My heart, her skin

  1. Heidi says:

    That’s a lovely way to explain it. Rowan has a cafe au lait spot on her left cheek. I’m tucking this piece of wisdom away for when she asks about it.

    • Lara says:

      Luke has one on his wrist. Lately he mistakes it for a bruise, saying “ow” and offering it up for kisses. Btw, I love Rowan’s name.

  2. pennypinchingpeach says:

    That is absolutely precious! I have a moderate ammount of freckles, and I like them. At one point some kids were teasing me about them, though, and my mom told me they were beauty marks and angel’s kisses, and the other kids were just jealous because the angels didn’t give them any. 🙂 That made me feel better, but didn’t stop the teasing. What did stop it? When they’d tease, I’d stop and stare seriously into their faces and start counting with my finger pointing at every single freckle I could find on them. They didn’t know how to react, since it didn’t bother me and I found all their freckles. LOL

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