Monday, 29 April 2013
We cocooned ourselves inside, away from the world, for the first week of Thea's life on the outside. Every evening a friend has dropped off a home-cooked meal; nourishing us with soups and stews and homemade bread. The rain drummed down on our tin roof and when the sun came out it cast long autumnal shadows through the woodsmoke that drifted through the karri trees. We sat on the verandah and read storybooks and gazed at our little girl. I felt engulfed in a haze of happiness.
One week after she was born we celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary. The boys spent the day playing with Grandma while we dressed up and headed out for a romantic lunch at a winery, just the three of us. And we remembered how such things were possible with just one wee little newborn sleeping in her capsule, and reminisced about the restaurants we used to walk to in the city with Lewis sleeping in the pram nearly eight years ago. It feels like a lifetime (and that it is, to him), and yet it has passed in the blink of an eye.
My mum and dad made a fleeting visit from the city to meet Thea while she was still so very small. They brought with them bags filled with pink presents for their first granddaughter. And beautiful handmade wooden boards from a friend in Germany, who had carved each of our boys one emblazoned with their name. We ate sausages in the sunshine and listened to the music from the ANZAC Day march drifting up the hill, before we had to wave goodbye to them again too soon.
We went to bed early and lazed around in bed until late. And watched our boys falling in love with their little sister. It is a beautiful thing to see.
Wednesday, 24 April 2013
Thursday, 4 April 2013
My bag has been packed for more than a week as I find myself drifting through these last days, weeks, perhaps month of pregnancy. I am now 37 weeks pregnant. I believe that is considered full term in medical circles. It is a stage of pregnancy I have never experienced before, and never thought to reach. I remember feeling cheated out of that last month the first time around, so perhaps this is my reward. A baby who is happy to wait at last.
I was already having contractions when a group of dear women friends gathered around me three weeks ago to buoy my spirits and surround me with love (much like last time) as I prepared for birth. Their beads are strung on a necklace which I wear around my neck each day and drape around the candles on my bedside table when I climb into bed each night. But having reached and passed the 36 week mark at which my three boys were all born, the contractions have faded. And with them all certainty I had that this baby was coming, and coming soon. It feels like I could go on being pregnant forever, forgetting about the baby still growing inside me save for when an especially forceful kick reminds me of its presence.
The extra time has allowed me to surrender to the unknown; to give myself over to the mystery of birth. To accept that this baby will be born wherever and whenever it chooses. After two beautiful home births in the city I struggled with the idea of heading back to hospital this time around. And if the baby comes quicker than its brothers there is a chance we may not make it to the nearest maternity ward. I just have to trust that my body and my baby will find the right time and place to mark this next major transition. Whenever you are ready, baby. I can't wait to meet you...