Pregnancy is so humbling. I feel so big and so small at the same time. Like the me is so little in here and the shell of me is so big that I get lost some days. Lack of sleep doesn’t help either. Nor loss of mobility and agility. But I don’t want to complain. After the last two weekends it has never been more apparent to me how supported and loved I am and how natural and normal giving birth can be.
Timothy and I spent our weekend with 14 other couples and the enigmatic Ana Paula Markell learning everything we could about the potentials and the pitfalls of birth. It was truly a bonding experience for your Papa and I that we will never forget. I have never felt so close to him and so prepared for such an awesome experience. It was very emotional. I loved hanging out with so many other preggers, too. Everyone’s symptoms and bodies are so different. It’s really cool.
I decided to make a list of my pregnancy challenges for posterity’s sake as I know I will forget once I see your beautiful little face.
In chronological order:
1. Morning sickness all day but rarely throwing up.
2. Pregnancy Acne.
3. One obnoxious little hemmie that won’t go away no matter what I do.
4. Varicose veins in my right leg only- I can’t wear compression hose, I just can’t.
5. Terrible heartburn and IBS- this DID make me throw up, a lot.
6. Loss of ankles. Cankles.
7. Hands too swollen for wedding ring.
8. Mid back pain. Huge knots.
9. Tingling, painful hands that go numb at night no matter what I do or how I lay.
10. Sleep anxiety- something about breathing?
11. Fatigue and general confusion.
Other than that- I have been super lucky, I think. I have not gained too much weight, I don’t have diabetes, my legs don’t cramp, I’m not a crazy person emotionally, and I feel pretty damn good most days.
My relative emotional sanity is probably what I appreciate the most. For some reasons, my hormones have not wreaked havoc in that arena. At least not yet. I should probably give them time. I’m not a grumpy, moody, depressed person and I never have been. Hopefully, I’ll keep the same positive outlook when you are two weeks old and I haven’t slept. We’ll see. Big dreams I have. Big ones.
We had a spurt of nesting though- here is your sweet little bassinet, Pony, this is where you will be sleeping at first. Right next to Papa and I, so you can hear us breathe and we can hear you. Next will be your room- but no photos of that until it’s finished.
I wanted to show you the beautiful beaded necklaces that Katie made for us from the shower. Each bead has a special purpose and power. This is the necklace for me:
Isn’t it amazing? It’s like our birth rosary. The two bigger stones to the right will be used differently. We are going to hang a crystal from the bottom and put it in your bedroom window, for protection.
This is the necklace for you:
Each bead is so precious and has its own special story. I can’t wait to tell you them someday. The pearl encased on the bottom was given to you by your Godmother, Vanessa because pearls are the only stone made out of another living things body. I thought that was kind of cool.
I love the power of women. There was something so tribal about the baby shower. It was our own little village with women of all ages and stages of life sharing their experience, strength, and hope. Priceless.
But then what was so unexpected, was to have a very similar tribal experience at the workshop, where your Papa and I could share with other couples our hopes and fears. Another kind of village.
They say it takes a village to raise a child. We have two now.
And lastly, as I was in the bath tonight I was overcome, once again, with a wave of gratitude towards you, Pony dear, for picking me to be your Mother. I have never felt so honored in all of my life. I swear to you that I take this wonderful and challenging job you’ve given me with every ounce of my being and promise to be the best I can be for you. That doesn’t mean that I will solve all your problems, or pick you up every time you fall because I believe you need those experiences to grow. But I will be the best listener you have ever met and I just might have a word of wisdom here or there.
Speaking of wisdom, there is one gift it kills me that I will never be able to give you. It’s a gift I treasure these days above all else. The gift of Hindsight.
It has never been so clear to me how necessary every single moment of my life has been- because each break-up and break-down brought me closer to you, to your Dad, and to this life I live today. If I knew what was waiting for me on the other side, I would have celebrated all those painful rejections and bitter disappointments; jumped up and down at every no, appreciated the seemingly random cruel twists and turns that baffled me at times. If I had only had the faith of hindsight, I would have rejoiced repeatedly and never mourned a loss. I wish that for you. Although I know it is impossible and I needed to mourn to grow at times, I promise to remind you that there is a divine plan, that you need to trust, and that it will all be fine. I used to joke that one should never pray for patience because then you’ll have to wait forever. But patience is golden. Faith is precious. And you are my heart.
I love you, I love your Dad, and I love our little family of 3.