My Sunshine

posted by Momo Fali on December 29, 2016

Dear Ali,

You didn’t come into the world serenely.

As I was being monitored in a hospital room, 10 weeks before your due date, a team of doctors, nurses and I-don’t-know-what-else came running in. They shoved meds and catheters in, strapped my arms down, and in a matter of minutes my belly had been cut open, You were pulled out and whisked to the NICU where they put a tube down your throat to help you breathe.

Two days later, I was allowed to hold you. The nurses said I should “kangaroo” you and hold you skin to skin, so I came to the hospital every day and I’d pull the curtain around your isolette and hold your tiny body firmly against mine.

I told you so many stories about the things that awaited you at home. Hours and hours and days and days about our crazy dog, Blue, my Grandma’s rocking chair and your very own room. I sang, “You Are My Sunshine.” Despite my horrible singing voice and your beeping monitors, it was very peaceful.

But, all I wanted was for you to come home.

Of course, in the last couple of years, your definition of home has changed a lot. I’m sorry for that. I hope that by what you have lost, you have also gained understanding, compassion and forgiveness. I’m still working on that last one. Looking for the bright side will serve you well, and when you can’t find the bright side, keep working on it. At least you can say that you tried.

Through your many different homes, and all the chaos into which you’ve been thrust, I hope you have always known how very much you are loved. I can’t really express it by holding you in my lap and singing to you anymore, but if it wouldn’t be odd for me to hold an adult in my lap and belt out tunes, you’re the adult I would pick.


And, let that be your constant. In the future, when life starts an uphill portion of its roller coaster ride, remember that you are, and will always be, my sunshine.




  • Melisa


  • Mary Ann


    This is a beautiful testament to your beautiful daughter. She has become a glowing beacon through the troubled waters she has traveled upon…certainly not unscathed, but hopefully, the better for it. My prayers are always with you both.

  • Tanya

    Very profound. Thank you for being a loving voice of reason for divorced families. It’s a mountain to climb, but we would do anything for our forever little ones. Hopefully they will learn & be better versions of us.

  • Jessica

    My parents divorced when I was 16 (and out of the country!) and I never saw my family again. I mean, I never saw my intact family of my childhood again. The love of both my parents but most strikingly, my mother, guided me through that loss. The grief. The confusion. The anger. And years later I’m amazed they kept that marriage together as long as they did and I am grateful they did because the childhood I had was made possible from their sacrifice. And I am grateful that they were wise enough to pull their lives apart because in the long run, both my parents are so much healthier and stronger because of that huge, painful process. I suspect your daughter will end up in a similar place and I suspect your love and your prospective and your courage is what will make the difference. As it did when she was a baby. As it always will.

  • AlisonH

    What a beautiful love letter to your daughter. I hope she treasures it–and you. And that she’s enjoying her first year of college.

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