Rain, Rain

I’d tell it to go away, but it’s just too beautiful.  I love the way it rains here: big, cold drops that soak everything, a fine mist hanging in the air like we live in a cloud, and the world is all in shades of blue.

I have made so much bread this past month that my favorite, base recipe is memorized and I’ve gone through almost twenty pounds of flour!

Last week, while unpacking and going through my clothes, I found all my work slacks and blouses and had the surreal feeling that I was unpacking, shaking out, folding, and repacking a whole different person.  One year seems like a lifetime ago.

I don’t think I’ve ever taken so long to try at putting a new life together.  I could tell you it’s because I was so tired and so busy with new motherhood or I could tell you the truth; I didn’t want to move so, in my stubborn way, I did, but I also didn’t.  I’m incredibly grateful we happened upon this crazy, lovely house in this tiny, lovely town.  We have been welcomed so warmly, I’ve found it impossible to hold on to my anger and depression.

There’s a patch of blue sky getting bigger outside my kitchen window and the weather app says we’re heading for over 70 degrees . . . I think I’m going to pack up my sweet Sunshine when she’s done napping and find some water today.  : )

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Morning Mama Thoughts

My favorite thing about her ability to crawl and stand up is watching her choose where she would like to go and what she would like to do when she gets there.  She used to be limited to where we put her or what toys we presented her with, and now another layer of her personality is coming through.

My least favorite thing about her ability to crawl and stand up is that there are now roughly 10,762 new and exciting ways for her to accidentally maim/injure/kill herself.  I have nicknamed her “suicidal octopus” because I swear she has eight, lightning-fast arms and they’re all reaching for something dangerous!

We are getting closer to the end of nursing and I’m both excited and sad.  On one hand, I will be SO happy to be able to wear whatever I want without thinking about how hard/easy it will be to nurse in.  On the other hand, because my wild child is always on the go, nursing time has been our snuggle time and I wonder if/how she will snuggle when there’s no need to stop and snack in my arms.

I think about my parents all the time.  Having a child of my own puts an entirely different spin on so many of my memories.  Like when I was twelve and I was riding my horse bareback, with a bridle I made out of baling twine and jumping the irrigation canal/all the irrigation pipe in the field.  If I remember right, my dad was supposed to be watching me, but he had to go handle a work emergency so mom came to pick me up.  She was terrified of horses and I remember seeing her white knuckles on the fence as we thundered up the way.  I have always thought that story was hilarious.  Now I can actually imagine the worry and fear she must have felt that I would be hurt.  To my  mother’s credit, she did not punish me; she signed me up for jumping lessons.  : )

Another hilarious thinking of my mom moment came when I was exiting the restroom and passed a woman and her young son going in together.  It struck me for the very first time that my mother actually taught me to use the bathroom!!!!  Thanks, mom.  : )

I am so happy to finally be in a permanent living space.  Every situation we’ve been in since she was born has been temporary.  She’s been shuttled across the country multiple times, spent countless hours in the car while we looked for vehicles, then apartments, then houses.  She seems pretty happy wherever we are, but I think she’ll feel the difference as we get settled.

A lovely friend sent me a lovely book (The Magic of Motherhood) and though it’s hard to find time to read, my favorite line from the early chapters is, “Your body will be a home to your children.”  How very true.  My body doesn’t look or feel quite the way it did before my Sunshine came along but there is no place where she feels as safe and comfortable as my arms.  No other body will do, it’s only mine that gives her such peace and security–how beautiful is that?

She is swinging in the living room, fast asleep while I sip coffee and write.  Occasionally, I look up and her face swings into view.  If I had known before getting pregnant just how much I would feel as a mother, I might have chosen another path.  It’s frightening sometimes, the depth and breadth of it.  What I know now that she’s here is that I’d feel it all a thousand times for just one of her sunny smiles.

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My Sweet Miss Baby

According to medicine, you are three days late.  Some say you’re being stubborn, but I confess I feel proud that you’re already bucking the expectations of the establishment and you haven’t even left the womb!  Don’t let the man tell you when to be born, you tell the man!

Looking at it from your perspective, I doubt you’re any more eager to experience birth than I am.  I mean, even an infant can see that the physics involved are not in either of our favors.

I say to myself I won’t miss these aching hips but something tells me that one day I’ll look back and remember the feeling of your tiny feet against my ribs with a pang of sadness that we’ll never again be as we are now.

As you near the end of your journey into this world, I carry our two souls together knowing it will only be for a precious little longer.  This can be a sad and scary place, but there is so much to love, I’ve always found even the hardest times to be worth it.

Whenever you decide it’s time, your dad and I are here to welcome you with open arms, five furry siblings, and a very small pair of cowgirl boots.  : )

Uncomfortable Miracle

My body is changing so quickly to accommodate new life–these new breasts and veins, this expanding belly, and the feeling of our baby moving within . . . an uncomfortable miracle.

I can’t imagine there is anything more personal than holding a life inside yourself–nourishing a soul into physical existence with your own breath, your own body.

Becoming a mother is beautiful . . . and painful and exhausting.

I now understand why many wild animals just disappear into a suitable bush by themselves to give birth, only appearing when they and their young are good and ready.

I’m trying very hard to stop explaining my choices in regard to pregnancy and having children, even (or perhaps especially) when pressed. It seems my aversion to expectations is bordering on pathological and it’s no wonder to me that children take months to be able to walk . . . expectations are by far and away the heaviest material known to man.

I cannot wait to meet this person we made. I’m not particularly interested in shopping for baby things, I don’t have a theme or care what the nursery looks like, and I have no preference for gender.  But I cannot wait to meet this person we made–to show him or her what we love about this beautiful world and to find out what he or she will bring into our world that we have no way of knowing yet.

I worry about this child’s health, about all the things that could go wrong from now until I’m dead and can’t worry anymore. But alongside the fear is the most incredible hope and joy–a confusing mix that I imagine will simply be a part of the rest of my life–my uncomfortable miracle, indeed.

The Early, Silent Hours

It’s the early, silent hours I love best.  Sipping my coffee, watching the sun rise, and feeling you thump around in my belly, hopefully without a care, as you knit yourself together from stardust and whatever I’ve been eating lately (mostly fruit and baked potatoes).  I imagine that when you feel finished and decide to arrive, the mornings will only get earlier and less silent, but for now, it’s the most lovely part of my day.  The part where I get to wonder about you without interruptions and can let go of all the fear and anxiety that I’m somehow doing this wrong even though we’ve just gotten started.

What I already feel for you reminds me so much of what I feel for your father.  I want to give you perfection, but all I have is myself. You should know this now, I have made and continue to make a lot of mistakes. I’m confident that your entry into our lives will only provide me with a wealth of new opportunities to be awkward and generally make a mess of things.  That said, I love to have fun, I’m a big fan of compromise, and I’m an expert at letting go (your dad is still working with me on how to hold on), which often works wonders when mistakes are made.

Your father is a riot.  You’re going to love the crazy things he can do with his face, the ridiculous repertoire of noises he can make (the dolphin being one of my personal faves).  And he has no idea how to hold babies, change diapers, etc, so you and I will share a lot of laughs in the early years while he fumbles around.

Well, little love, speaking of your father, the sun is up and it’s time for us to get started on the day.  I say we kick it off right and go jump on the bed right by Daddy’s face while singing Rise and Shine at the tops of our lungs.  He loves that.  ; )
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Sunday Thoughts

I wish the friendship were as simple to repair as the ring.

There will be no home for me.  I loved too much in too many places, too young to understand my heart would eventually break trying to accommodate the distance.  And yet, love is such a strange thing, even though it hurts terribly to never and always be home, I cannot make myself regret.

Another chapter closed while my mind was turned and now I stare at the next blank page thinking, “How did we get here so quickly?”

Fall is coming and myself, my knitting bag, my pen, and my heart are ready.  I think.