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mommy. wife. teacher. yogini. writer. coffee drinker. aunt. crocheter. reader. dog lover. scattered. methodical. rational. irrational. paranoid. annoyed. lost. found. content. searching. peaceful. i am constantly in search of my story. the one i have never happened. the one i've lived i cannot write.

08 September 2010

baby, baby.

babies have been on the radar;
from pregnant neighbors
and co-workers
to inquiring minds
and dreams influenced
by too much bedtime ice cream...

and while i know
i don't owe anyone
an explanation
i still feel the need
to talk about it
and this
is my go-to place
for just such


it is strange
the way our lives change;
eleven years ago
no one was asking me
if i was planning on having a baby
with my new boyfriend
who had lots of tattoos
and a souped up nissan.
in fact
(parental people)
were probably more concerned
with me not getting pregnant.

and so were we.
parenthood was not
an adventure we wanted to have.


two years later
when i became
that guy's wife
a few people speculated
as to when we would start a family
but more speculated
when we would get divorced;
we were 20 and 21
young by today's standards
and the odds were stacked against us.

i was in college
he was working at a gas station
we barely made the rent
but there was love
and so we decided to start a family.

we got sammy.

and we were very happy
with our family of three.


it was near the end
of my college career
when we decided that maybe
a baby
was the next logical step.

and so
in those months
i spent driving to
and from
saint louis
we made the most of our brief weekends
and watched the days slip by
on the calendar
on the wall.
and when graduation
finally came
i felt defeated
and said,
"let's move home."

and that was the end
of the baby talk.

but we did decide
to expand our family
once again.

we got oz.

and we were very happy
with our family of four.


and the days
turned into weeks
and months
and years.

my parents had resigned themselves
to being grandparents
of grandpuppies
and we had resigned ourselves
to being the hip
childless couple.

we had freedoms
we knew
we would sacrifice
as parents;
spontaneous roadtrips
random late-night errands
spur of the moment concerts
coffee dates
evenings spent at the gym
coming and going
as we wanted
with no one to worry about
but us.

and when i was asked
"when are you going to have kids?"
my response evolved from
"i don't know," to
"i don't know that i am."


i was smoking a cigarette
the moment i realized
i was pregnant.

i was standing in my sister's garage
chatting about my bad mood
and other various
female conundrums
when i began to do the math in my head:

i was two weeks late.

she became giddy at the idea
while i
shrugged it off
lit another cigarette
and tried to decide
where to buy a pregnancy test.

i went home
peed on a stick
that instantly gave me
two pink lines
but decided to go sit on my porch
for a minimum five cigarettes
just for good measure.
and as i sat
and waited
and let the smoke
curl around my brain
i thought about
all those things
i was going to have to sacrifice
all those plans
i was going to have to change.

two pink lines
can turn your world
upside down.

and when bill arrived home
i said,
"i have good news
and i have bad.
which do you want first?"


"the good news is
the students refund check came today.
the bad news is
we aren't going to ireland
next summer."


"because you're going to be a daddy."

and the smile on his face
the glimmer in his eye
made it all okay
and a flood of excitement
washed over me.

and i quit smoking.


it's no secret
that pregnancy
was not my thing.

you can read about it
and here
and even here.

this made me all the more anxious
to be a mama.


two years later
here i am.
the journey through pregnancy
and now toddlerhood
all documented somewhere amidst the wires.
and despite my loathing of pregnancy
i made it a point to savor it
because going into it
i knew
it would be my only time.

and the infancy...
oh how i savored that time
pocketing each moment in my heart
the smells
the expressions
the smiles
the quiet moments shared while i nursed her
the shape her mouth took on when she slept
the day she sat up for the first time
slept in her own bed for the first time
crawled for the first time
took her first steps
the way she would open her mouth, grab your hair and eat your nose
as if to kiss you
the way she would tuck her left arm behind my back
while we rocked to sleep
the way she looked laying on her daddy's chest
after a warm bath
the way her eyes sparkled when she saw snow for the first time.
i soaked up these moments
because i knew
i would never get them back
and that tomorrow
she would be different
than she was today.

and the toddlerhood...
while trying at times
has been a whirlwind experience
that leaves us exhausted
and smiling
the way she dances
shoves her hands in her pocket and saunters through life
the conversations
and jokes
and giggles we share
the way she barely opens her eyes as she falls asleep and says,
"no big dinosaurs here, mama.  we're safe."
or those moments
when she thinks we're not looking
and rocks her baby dolls and says,
"you no feel good?  i kiss it make it better.  all better?  oh, okay!"
the thrill that comes with watching her use the toilet
or open doors by herself
or put a puzzle together
or a key into the ignition of a quad
(don't ask)
and despite the moments of frustration
the relay races through the grocery store
the "go away, mama"'s or "i do it myself, daddy"'s
the times we nearly pull her arm out of its socket as we reach for her just before she runs into the street
the restless nights
the messy house
the lack of energy
i wouldn't trade it
or her
for the world.

not for all of the
spontaneous roadtrips
random late-night errands
spur of the moment concerts
coffee dates
evenings spent at the gym
coming and going
as we wanted
that came before her.
because i cannot imagine my life

without this child.

and we are happy
our family of three
plus two
big dogs
and a fish.


and so
in response
i don't know if another child
is in the cards for all of us.

there is a part of me that would love for charlie
to experience a sibling
the way i did
and to have that person
to move through life with.


i am honest when i say that
my heart is not aching for a second child
my womb is not swelling at the idea of carrying another soul
my mind is has not been tempted to even consider it in the last year
my husband is perfectly happy being the daddy of one incredible little girl.

my hip is only reserved for one.

and we are very happy
our little family.

go well.

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