Monday, September 15, 2014


Eighteen weeks and four days. Four and a half months. So far things have been still and peaceful and mostly serene. I was barely sick, my cravings and other symptoms have been supremely mild. Pass the vanilla coke and bagels with cream cheese! For this I am grateful. I see myself as a mother in a very abstract way to this little flicker of life inside of me. All I know of it is it's drumbeat heart I've heard twice now, quick and strong, and a little peek at that sweet profile. That baby was moving and shaking this morning making it almost impossible for the tech to take a really clear picture, but it was so amazing to watch. The life in me is special and I feel a strong allegiance to it. I feel the need to do my very best for that tiny dancer.

Jared and I chose early on not to find out the gender of the baby. This is mainly for fun. There are precious few mysteries in life, and I have always loved a happy surprise. The anticipation brings me pleasure in a way I can't really describe. Not knowing hasn't been a burden, and I don't expect it will be. It is just for me and Jared, and that feels just right. On seeing the baby Jared feels like its a boy - and I still have no clue! Any guesses?

I am also choosing to do the best I can to plan for and strive to complete a natural birth, in the care of midwives at a birthing center. Once Baby became a reality, I started researching, pondering and praying ardently for confirmation that this was the right choice for my family. Don't be a hero was my early mantra. I don't have anything to prove. But when I think of my birth plan I am filled with hope, positive thoughts, light, warm feelings, the buzzing of nerves, peace and strength. Jared has been totally and completely on board since day one and has similar thoughts and feelings. I find this process endlessly fascinating. If you ever want to talk the wonder of the human body with me, I will marvel with you all the day long. Each piece of the puzzle fits so perfectly. And when family or close friends question me in a loving way, or even rib me, I can take it! In fact I love a good friendly tease, that's one of my personal calling cards.

But let me tell you what usually happens when you're a first timer. People hold the mystery of children - from birth to breastfeeding to education and beyond - over you like a weapon, pretending that they have the answers. That is something I can not abide. When people cackle at my decision, treat me like a silly child and proceed to tell me the news that childbirth is painful, I can't help but get angry. What is this urge we have to burst a bubble when we see one? What is this desire to rain on parades? There is a way to give  loving advice, to share your experience out of true concern, to be positive and supportive of a choice you wouldn't make for yourself. But it's always been easier to accept fear I suppose.

So maybe I will be a hero. Maybe I will be my body's champion. Perhaps I will listen to what it is whispering, and at the end, screaming to me. Because I know it will scream. But still, I think I will carry on. I know I will, because no one else is going to do it for me. People are drawn towards negativity. I certainly am. But how much happier we are when we trust ourselves. We don't always get an explanation attached to the answer to our prayers and our meditation, but we do get answers. Especially when we allow ourselves to be positive and have hope. No matter what happens, that is what I cling to. This baby will come out: in water, on land, in a birth center, in a hospital, with an epidural or with the help of a surgeons deft hands.  I am confident in my path. I feel strong and capable. I share my decisions because I have no shame in them. I pray that at the end of the journey there will be no callous "I told you so" moments. No matter what happens, I will still be a mother, and Baby will still be my baby. And no one can take that away.

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