Thursday, July 26, 2012

Skippy Says: 38 Weeks (Pregnancy Journal)

38 Weeks

Dear baby girl,

We are all moved into our new place. Your nursery is set up, my spices are alphabetized and put away, and your clothes are washed and organized. I am officially ready for you to come.

A lot of people talk about how they feel exhausted during pregnancy, especially towards the end, and I consider myself very lucky to have been spared from this fate. I'm not sure whether I actually have the same amount of energy that I used to, or whether it's my utter inability to sit still and not be doing something productive at all times, but overall I've continued with my days per usual-- going to the gym, walking Ryder, grocery shopping, cooking, etc. The first time I truly felt totally wiped out was the first four loooong days of moving and unpacking. And by looooong  I mean working from 6:00 am- 1:00 am and sleeping for just five hours, only to get up and do it all over again. And again. And then for a fourth time. But I wanted to badly to get it all done. You know, because of all the crazy in my head. I'm sure despite my best efforts you'll inherit some of it and understand exactly what it is I'm talking about. Just like you'll understand why it took every ounce of strength I had not to chop your uncle's hand off when he lifted a book I had oh-so-carefully arranged on your bookshelf at precisely the right angle and proceeded to put it back wrong. But I digress.

We are moved in. We have hot water. I have finally been able to nest, and it's been glorious. Aside from getting all of your things set up and ready, I've been cooking my little heart off in our amazing new kitchen. I made two different soups which I froze to defrost and eat after your arrival. And marinated tofu. And chow mein. And cookies. Plus some salads. Oh, and mini frittatas baked in a cupcake pan for a portable breakfast for daddy to take to work. Yeah. They're as cute as they sound. I thought they were kinda too cute to even eat, but daddy didn't agree.

This whole pregnancy, people have been asking whether I'm excited to meet you. And as the date gets closer and closer, I've been getting that question more and more. I've always answered, honestly, that yes, of course, I'm excited. But that yes was always accompanied by a reservation, a nervousness, a sense of not being ready. Because, you know, we were still living in your uncle's tiny apartment that he graciously offered to let us stay in while our house was being constructed. For the first time since getting pregnant, I now feel nothing but pure joy and excitement at the thought of you coming. And it feels so good. Daddy's been ready this whole time, but now I finally am too. As is Ryder-- your furry big bro spend the morning licking my belly as I sat on the couch reading childbirth stories, trying to will you to come out. Here's hoping you'll soon feel ready to meet all of us too.



Thursday, July 19, 2012

Skippy Says: 37 Weeks (Pregnancy Journal)

37 Weeks

Dear baby girl,

This is a big day for us. Today, I'm officially full term. And today, we are officially moving into our new house which we've been remodelling constructing for the last six months. We'll just ignore the fact that full term doesn't mean all that much since I technically have three more weeks to go. And while we're in the groove of ignoring things, we'll also ignore that the house we're moving into isn't quite done. And by that I mean, there's not exactly hot water in it quite yet. The next few days should be interesting as we wait with bated breath to discover what I hate more-- cold waters or being smelly. I have a feeling I may prefer the latter, but daddy might weigh in favor of me going with the former.

The last week has been absolute madness as we prep for the big move. Your grandma and grandpa have been helping a ton-- they're at the house every single day helping with one thing or another. I'm quite honestly constantly in awe of their unceasing support, and I so hope that I'll be able to give you the same thing one day. I've been helping when and where I can as well (in between prenatal appointments, various last minute prenatal tests, la leche league meetings, sessions with our doula, etc) but am pretty limited with what I am allowed to do given my big belly these days.

Speaking of that belly of mine, two people in the last week have asked me whether I'm having twins. Baby girl, here's your first piece of the heaps of unsolicited advice you're sure to get in your lifetime: don't ever, ever, ever ask a pregnant woman if she's having twins. No good can come of it. The stunned look on their faces when I told them there was only one of you in there didn't help matters too much either. Followed by "oh, she's going to be biiig." Thank you, kind strangers. Thank you very much.

On a brighter note, you and I have found a fun new game to play. You poke a limb out, I push back on it, and then you quickly retreat and poke another one out elsewhere. Rinse and repeat until one of us gets tired. Usually you. Gonna have to learn to buck up, girl- l'm not going to be going easy on you just because you're little. When I told daddy about our game, he commented that it sounded suspiciously close to a childhood favorite-- whac a mole. From none other than Wikipedia: "Whac-A-Mole is an arcade redemption game. A typical Whac-A-Mole machine consists of a large, waist-level cabinet with five holes in its top and a large, soft, black mallet. Each hole contains a single plastic mole and the machinery necessary to move it up and down. Once the game starts, the moles will begin to pop up from their holes at random. The object of the game is to force the individual moles back into their holes by hitting them directly on the head with the mallet, thereby adding to the player's score." That's a whole lotta words, so perhaps a visual aid is in order:

Except hopefully I'm not poking you hard enough to give you that woozy, though undeniably adorable, look on your face.



Thursday, July 12, 2012

Skippy Says: 36 Weeks (Pregnancy Journal)

36 Weeks

Dear baby girl,

I apologize for last week's letter to you being a bit of a downer. I happen to be one of those people that's terrible at hiding my true emotions, and when I sat down to try to write you a happy note despite being miserable it just felt...unsettling. I don't want to start our relationship off by lying to you before you're even born, so brutal honesty it was. Unfortunately, often times brutal honesty means letting you know that sometimes everything in the world seems like it's conspiring to ruin your life. As your mama, there is nothing I want more than to protect you from ever feeling that way, though I know that often times it will be out of my control. But thankfully there are days like today to balance it all out, days when brutal honesty means telling you that I can't stop smiling.

I woke up this morning to the kindest email I have ever received from a reader:

Dear Inna,
I was saddened to hear that baby's library has been damaged by the water and mold. Would it be OK if I send you a few replacements? You could let me know a few of the titles you lost, or I could send you a little B&N giftcard.      
It would really make me happy to help build up baby's library again -- I believe you're never too young (or old) to become a reader!

And then I melted into pure happiness. I'm not sure if this reader realizes quite what a powerful impact she had on me by sending this email. Sure, there is the obvious appreciation for her generosity to me and you, total strangers; appreciation for her thoughtfulness and compassion. But more than anything, I'm grateful to her for reminding me that I'm bringing you into a world where people like her exist. And when things are rough and I'm questioning how I'll ever deal with seeing you in pain from having to face your challenges yet unknown, it comforts me so much to know that the difficulties in your life will be balanced out by acts from kind people like her.

Speaking of bringing you into this world, I can't believe how soon it's going to happen. I know I say that every week, and it must be getting annoying to read over and over again, but it boggles my mind that you're due to join our family in less than 30 days. Three out of the ten couples from our centering group have already welcomed their little ones who chose to make an early appearance, and getting their emails one after the other was a not so gentle reminder that you really could come any day now. While this totally freaks me out because we're still not moved into our new house, daddy is much more carefree about the whole thing. It's pretty much daily now that he grabs my belly, gives it and you a little shake, looks me in the eye and demands: "give me my baby... I want my baby now." Endearing as it may be, I hope you continue to listen to me and not him, at least until we're moved in, unpacked, and, most importantly, all of my 100+ spices are alphabetically put away. Mmmmkay?

That being said, there is no way I can describe how excited I am to finally meet you, to snuggle and squeeze you as tightly as the anticipation of the last nine months wants me to. When I try to conjure up the words, my eyes automatically close, an involuntarily huge smile spreads across my face, and my heart literally feels as though it's about to swell out of my chest. But no words come.



Thursday, July 5, 2012

Skippy Says: 35 Weeks (Pregnancy Journal)

35 Weeks

Dear baby girl,

I can't believe we've made it this far-- 5 more weeks, or, if you really want to make me freak out, 35 more days, until your due date. Combine that ridiculously short period of time with my unrelenting feeling that you're making your arrival even earlier and all I can say is holy Crap. Notice the capital "C". Also, it's bolded and underlined for extra emphasis. That's how you know I mean business.

As always, I'm not going to sugarcoat things for you. This past week has been Rough. Notice how the "R" is not only capitalized, bolded, and underlined, but it's also italicized. That's how you know I mean serious business.

It all started Saturday when I discovered that suitcases I had been keeping in storage with all of my pre-pregnancy clothes and tons of shoes were soaking wet and covered in a thick layer of mold thanks to a leak in the storage unit. Oh, and a ton of books too. About 40 books we had bought for you to start your library collection, and a ton of mine as well including some of my favorites as well as cookbooks daddy and I got as wedding presents. I know this is just stuff, I do. But, superficial or not, I love my stuff. Knowing this, daddy kept commenting on how proud he was of me for not having a nervous breakdown. Truthfully, it's all due to my mama who was an absolute angel. She dropped everything she had to do and spent the whole day sorting through the piles of moldy things with me, laundering and hand-washing those things that had hope of being saved. I hope I can be a mama like that to you.

I woke up Sunday convinced it would have to be a better day. And it was. Slightly. All that happened was that Ryder pulled me really hard as I was walking him. Seeing as I'm a bit off balance these days, I fell over and sprained my ankle pretty bad. And then I limped home. Good times.

Monday I woke up with it feeling worse, so I called my doctor who suggested heading in to urgent care. I limped to my car only to discover it had been broken into overnight. Then I spent from 10:00 am- 5:00 pm in the waiting room in urgent care. Right in between that one dude who was loudly smacking his gum and the other dude that smelled like ass. There, I said it.

Tuesday I found two more moldy suitcases full of stuff I had somehow missed on Saturday.

That, my sweet girl, was my week. I told you I meant serious business.

But every time I felt down on my luck, lamenting how unfortunate I was (and, I won't lie, those times were many), I thought of you growing in my belly, of how lucky I am to get to hold you in my arms so soon. Holy Crap so soon. And while that didn't take away my Rough week, it certainly made it easier to bear. And for that I thank you.



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