I had my 38-week appointment today for our little babe. Hard to believe he could arrive any day! The news from my doctor is that he doesn't look that ready to come out yet (can't blame him) and so we've probably got another two weeks to wait here... at least. Maybe three weeks. Maybe four.
Or maybe he'll come tomorrow.
In the meantime, life as it is has taken on a whole new meaning for me. These days are limited. Change is on the horizon.
What will he be like? Quiet and chill? Anxious and colicky? A good eater? A good sleeper? Mothers tell you they are so excited for their new babies--and they are!--but they are also full of apprehension about what this unknown creature will be like. In some ways a mother already knows her unborn child better than anyone, for he came into existence and has grown inside of her for nine months. Yet in most ways everything about him is a complete mystery.
My response to the unknown has been to worry, which is foolish, I know. Worrying will do me no good! But my other response has been to slooooow down and take a deep breath and savor. Life right now is not perfect by any means, but it is good and it is full of beauty. I want to treasure these days up in my heart, locking them away to ponder over and remember forever.
Most of all I want to remember my quiet days at home with Lena. Our days are fairly routine here: awake by 7-ish, breakfast at 8-ish, goodbye to Daddy at 9-ish, nap at 10, lunch at 12, another nap at 2 or 3, and dinner prep starts at 5. In between we go on walks around the neighborhood or I push her stroller into town for groceries. We bake cookies for Daddy. We sit on the rug and play with her puzzles, her baby doll, her blocks, her paper and crayons. We read books before her morning nap, before her afternoon nap, and sometimes in between, too. She occasionally helps me with cleaning, like turning the vacuum switch on for me or dusting side-by-side. We practice words. We dance. We change diapers, we change clothes, we wash diapers, we wash dishes, all day long.
In this world, my daughter is my constant companion, my chatty little shadow, my ever-present friend. When she is napping and I am putting together a blog post and I see a picture of her, I actually miss her. And she's only been asleep for 30 minutes! And I need the break! But I look at her--her huge blue eyes, her curling brown hair, her petite little hands, her beautiful little body--and cannot believe she is our daughter, and how pretty and sweet she is, and that she exists in this world and loves us more than anyone and calls me, "Mama."
As some of you know or remember, I've felt a great deal of emotional conflict about being a stay-at-home mom. As a result, I am spending a lot of my spare time trying to develop talents so that I can work from home. Yet in this past year I have also fallen in love with this new job of staying at home with my child. I wake up each morning and look forward to the day. (And that is saying something when you consider other things that have happened in our lives this past year.)
With a new baby due any day, I feel a great deal of apprehension about the changes ahead. Apprehension... excitement... thankfulness... and just a bit of fear. And that is why I savor my life as a mother just as it is right now, savor our quiet and uneventful days together, savor today.