Notes On My Daughter’s Conscious Conception

Billimarie Lubiano Robinson
4 min readMay 11, 2020
Photo by Billimarie Lubiano Robinson

Everything has its intricate beginning.

Everything except for birth.

When people ask me how many weeks I am, I tell them two answers:

“Eighteen from conception. The medical industry wants me to say twenty.”

We are trained to be unsure of our own conceptions, to leave it in the hands of a profitable industry. It is an example of some other force authoring a contrived and safe narrative for our bodies, like a script that is assigned to us — one we had no hand in writing. I fight back against this conditioning in small ways, like giving different dates of my last menstrual period when asked. I watch with a wry smile on my face as professionals plug lies into their machines, then read the wrong answers back to me. There is an undercurrent to this spirit. As I take joy in rebelling in small and playful ways — like asking obnoxiously why a waiting room filled with pregnant women does not offer healthy snacks — I present to you the real beginning, a departure from the stale tales we have been forced to chew. This is a return to a truth that belongs to the body, the spirit, the heart, and the black brown dirt of this Earth —

You came to me like a vibrant wind along the shore.

It would be wrong to say I was not expecting you; right to say I was not entirely conscious of your season.

Of course there were signs.

There were signs in the early days: the call to visit spiraling cities by the sea, a remembrance of all things coral white and deep blue. Collecting sea shells like a song. Each intricate twig and stone, gifts from the flow of rivers and trees.

I think you’re awake, now. I know this because it is 3AM: the time you take to fluttering. The time I take to weaving.

I know exactly when it was aligned and decided that you would come into fruition. The night of your conception, I felt the universe in the palms of my hands, like a vibrating room, like a clanging cymbal. It was as though my waking being had finally caught up with the others: you, the force moving through the earth and the sea like a wandering wind seeking shelter. Me and my anchoring strands, the wisps of Saturn threaded into my palms. Your father, who I chose for his…