07 October 2015


Two years ago I wrote about growing a garden and a baby. We were eagerly anticipating the first infantile addition to our little family, the first genetic combination of J and I. I was 13 weeks and two days pregnant.

And now, here we are: 13 weeks and four days pregnant. Eagerly in anticipation again. Now, with a bit more experience in the whole process and endeavor, but none the more experts on bringing a new human into the world (and then raising it to boot). It is just as frightening and absurd the second time around. That is what pregnancyx2 has taught me thus far.

I remember pregnancy feeling as a weighted time in which to reflect and be made better, be made more, for the sake of this new life. In true form, this pregnancy- this tiny presence- has stirred up all sorts of unresolved feelings from postpartum last time around. Two years ago, I was pregnant. One year ago, I was very, very sad. I think these unresolved feelings are the very things that I need to reflect on and dispel for the sake of this baby. This is the way I am going to be made better for the love of this child.

I'm working on it baby. I'm reading and praying and shaking off the past a little bit every day. I want to be a better version of myself for you. 

In lighter and much cuter news: this is the face of a BIG SISTER:

23 September 2015


I peaked into Alice's bedroom on Sunday morning: Jake's tall frame was sprawled across the floor, perched up on his left elbow, gazing intently through crib rails at Alice's sound asleep face. He looked up at me as I tiptoed to his side and he whispered "she's so big." He almost seemed emotional, realizing that our little baby, our first born, nearly fills her crib. She used to look especially tiny when sleeping, curled up and swaddled. Now, sleep reveals the full length of our toddler; the solid, healthy frame of a child who can walk and run and climb. Our baby, who hasn't been a baby for a while.


"Mama" and "Dada" have taken their rightful place in Alice's petite vocabulary, but the latter seems a precious secret she can't quite exclaim. It is only whispered, "Dada, Dada," when looking at Jake from a distance. Other words and phrases have slipped out too. We walked the back yard a few evenings ago, checking in on Alice's pear trees, bought for her birthday by Dada himself. I always honestly declare "good job pear trees!" They are doing quite well- far outpacing our apple trees planted years prior. This week, without missing a beat, Alice quietly mimicked "good job," while patting a pear tree leaf. We went into the basement so she could tell Dada good job while he worked, but then she would only whisper his name, seeming too shy to verbally commend his efforts.


Jake was in Alice's room before she woke up on Sunday because we had to get out the door for the annual Walk for Hospice. It was our second year manning the coffee area, which is a nice job to have on a cool, early, Fall morning. People are glad to see a table full of steaming coffee carafes and happy babies/toddlers make people smile too. I wore Alice in the Ergo and Jake made sure there was always milk and creamer on hand. A tall man, in his 60's?, caught my eye from across the field. He was clad in a safari hat, a brightly colored bow tie, and a wide smile. After the walk he wandered to our station and we got to talking about his spouse, who passed away 9 years ago. We talked about why he walks and his hopes to have a crowd gathered for his 10th walk next year. He noted Alice's runny nose and offered her sunscreen. Then, he said he wanted to leave me with something: "true love is cherishing the things you wouldn't have chosen." We both got teary and I nodded. He walked away.


In every worth-it relationship, there are easy things to cherish. Jake is a beautiful father. Alice is a dreamy daughter. I like to think I'm not terrible to live with either. Yet, as soon as Ed left me with that axiom on Sunday, my mind was flooded with the harder things, the less savory realities, that are present in any worth-it relationship too. For a moment, I felt guilty for the times of resentment, anger, selfishness that I have possessed in our time as a family. I know there have been many. I know there will be more. Here is to one more reminder to focus on the things that unite us, not those that divide. And here is to even cherishing the things that drive us crazy or we just don't understand. Because we will miss them, you know? We will miss them so desperately.

17 September 2015


We left the park on Monday wasp-stung (me) and black-eyed (Alice). Still, a successful morning. Motherhood means more joy and less perfection. On Monday it meant holding Alice's hand while that little bugger of a sting throbbed under her grasp. Gladly.

My hand was still throbbing a bit when I went to bed that night, but I woke up the next morning with hardly a trace of the incident. Just a slight red dot remains. Alice, on the other hand, has gotten progressively more bruised under her right eye since her misstep on the playground. She doesn't seem to mind, though it certainly adds to her recently acquired renegade, ragamuffin, fearlessness. At that playground she was taking on slides and tunnels totally solo. She has started eyeing our deck stairs, considering a descent on her own. Her blazing courage is awesome and terrifying. I've appreciated how careful she's been up to now, but seeing her toddle off across wood chips toward play structures without looking back? I feel proud. My girl is brave.

So, I will take her hand any moments she offers it. And I will attempt to revel in her letting it go and running off into wild and free adventures. Within reason. Those deck stairs are still off limits.
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