Monday, July 21, 2014

A Bright Light...

One year ago today we welcomed our sweet baby #2 into this world.  At 8:35am we were told "It's another girl!"  K doesn't know it, but we arranged with my OB to have her born via c-section on this day for a reason.  This was my father's birthday.  We all felt this was a way to honor him. 

The irony is over the last year, we joke that she has a lot of personality like he did-I believe she has a special connection to him, even though she's never met him.  Our sweet K was a bright spot in a long and trying year.  On  July 21, 2013 we were reminded of the circle of life.  It's hard to put into words emotions on a day like today.  So many "firsts" over the last year....her first smile, giggle, crawl, food, even steps.  She is my bundle of joy and energy, yet she is also my snuggle bug.  Yet also all the firsts of life without daddy.  We seem to all finally have settled into new routines and have found the new normal at holidays and birthdays.  I am thankful I've had the summer off to truly enjoy these moments with both my girls and have just finished 10 days of my mom being with us.  My heart is full....Happy Birthday K and Happy Heavenly Birthday Daddy!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Life in 3D: The In Between

So RJ and I had been reading this book about a momma panda at the zoo. She was pregnant and the zoo keepers said they could tell she was getting close to having the baby because she stopped leaving her cave and started sleeping all the time. All I could think about was how much I could relate to that momma panda (and how much I wished I had a cave). I too had stopped leaving my house and used every spare moment to steal a nap. I also stopped answering my phone, cooking, cleaning, niceties, and pretty much everything else. I'm trying to remember if I even bathed the kids the last month. Pregnancy at 34 is no joke. I felt like I was 104.

But, as most of you know, KH was born on May 7th at 1:41 pm and weighed in at 9 lbs 14 oz. (I am woman hear me roar.) He is beautiful and he is perfect and he is mine. So then I spent the next (hate to say it) 2 months lying in bed snuggling. I am not kidding. Many a day I would get up and send the kids to day camp only to return to bed with my baby and not move for the rest of the day. I jealously guarded my time with him. I am painfully aware that this very well may be my last newborn and I am soaking up every possible moment with him. For those of you who have seen Lord of the Rings picture me in bed as Gollum cradling my baby hissing "My Precious" at anyone who tries to steal a moment from me.

It's weird- the newborn phase. Everything is hazy from the lack of sleep and the hormones and the lack of sleep. It's like you're not even a real person. I exist solely for the sustenance and protection of this child. This tiny, perfect, helpless little being that I created. It very much is living in between. Between pregnancy and being a real human being again. It probably took me a month to even notice my husband was still living in the house. At which point I could see in his eyes the desperation to return to a normal life. He wanted his wife back. But I wasn't ready to be back yet.

Don't get me wrong I was fulfilling my basic duties. I picked the kids up and took them to the library. I managed to get dinner on the table- at least for them- every night. I finally potty trained DC (well, mostly). I dealt with a lice outbreak (holy hell that's a story for another time). I cooked and cleaned and folded mountains of laundry. We had birthday parties, school programs, and swim lessons. There were 4th of July fireworks, Dinosaur exhibits, cheer camp and our first ER visit. But most of it was still going through the motions.

And so now here I am with a 10 week old and I am just starting to be human again. Although my two favorite hobbies are staring at my baby and counting the ounces of breastmilk in the deep freeze  I am trying. I have even enjoyed a few beers with my husband. Despite the fact that *gasp* that meant I had to pump and dump that liquid gold down the drain. I am starting to venture out again although I warn you I somehow manage to bring breastfeeding into every conversation. I usually follow that up with a conversation about pooping in the potty (or lack thereof).

I have noticed people backing away from me as I steer their innocent "How have you been?" into a full on discussion of my freezer stash. But I don't care. This is where I am right now and if you don't want to talk feeding schedules, lactation, or poopy swim my diapers (which are straight from the devil) then I suggest you just wave and act like you're getting a phone call. I've got 4 weeks left of maternity leave. Four short weeks until I will be forced to at least pretend like a member of society. Four glorious weeks to love my babies and enjoy the extra time with them. Until then, if you need me, you can find me with my head in the deep freeze calculating the exact number of days we have stocked or dreamily staring at my baby.