I am almost in my 18 weeks of knowing you, feeling you, growing you, loving you. When we were at our prenatal appointment almost two weeks ago, we got to hear your whooshing strong heartbeat again and it was, as always, pure bliss. When I weighed myself, I had to step down in shock and weigh myself again. Did it really read 115 lbs? I began this journey at 108. Granted, while I’m still weighing less that I did when I conceived Kaia (118 lbs then!), I guess it just shocked me to see such a rapid weight gain. I mean, I AM pregnant after all and that weight was gonna come sometime. Believe me, baby love, it’s worth every ounce and pound. Every last one of ’em.
I am still feeling fabulous, albeit tired (do I say that every single time?). People at work are finally staring to stare at my growing belly and ask “Are you expecting?”. Funny enough, your movements seem to be sporadic, some days slowing to barely any movement. But I know you are there, hibernating and waiting patiently.
“It is tempting to think that if only they could speak, infants could take us back to their beginning, to the force of their becoming; they could tell us about patience, about waiting and waiting in the dark.”
I’ve requested my medical records from Kaia’s birth and I have very mixed emotions about going through them. Part of me knows I must understand what happened to my body, and to Kaia, during that intense experience. Part of me is so very terrified about what I might found out, about the emotions it may bring up. I already feel vulnerable just knowing they are on their way. Some of those emotions are still so raw within me, and it will be like reopening the proverbial (and the very real) wound I’ve worked to heal with tenderness and time.I’ve asked Jason and a close friend to be my protectors, to review them prior to me. I hope they bring great healing and a deeper understanding, and acceptance, of her birth. And I hope they prepare me for your amazing birth, instilling an even stronger trust in my body’s ability to gently and powerfully bring you into our world.
I attended an astounding, powerful, and beautiful home birth on Sunday as a doula. The experience made me even more anxious for your arrival and I began to envision your birth over and over. I think about what the room will smell like, how dim the lights will be, the sounds and words and vocalizations that will be emitted, the feel of warm water and firm hands on my body, your Daddy’s loving presence beside me. I visualize the desert sun, or sometimes the vast desert night sky, outside of our windows. I think about the anticipation of your big sister, at once knowing everything and perhaps nothing at all. I can feel the soft sheets, and taste the cool sips of water and juice. I feel strong and empowered. I notice the gentle flicker of candles and the sweet wafting of incense, and can almost feel the rushes and waves arising in my body, encasing me and sending me traveling in birth world, in your world. And I can even visualize the sensation of my cervix melting away, and you moving down within my birth canal, and my center opening and stretching for you, and your soft head emerging from my body. My hands help life you to me. And, at last, I imagine the moment of our Earthly greeting…I taste the salt of my happy tears and the perfect newness of your skin, all mixing together.
And here, no one else takes you from my arms. You rest warm against my breast and beating heart, still connected to me, each of us learning one another’s body from the outside this time. There are no needle pricks, no bottles of sugar water, no bright lights to glare in your eyes, no immediate measuring and weighing and lifting and pulling and tugging and handling. An orchestra of love and celebration begins their symphony in a room dancing with peace and gratitude. In my mind, and in my body’s memory, it is becoming real.
I await you, my baby love.