Monday, May 2, 2016

Babykins #3: Reflections and Comparisons at Thirty Weeks

 I'm actually a little embarrassed I'm so behind on this. Obviously, I've spent the past year being behind on blogging but this feels different and like it should be blogged about in a more timely manner. Anyway, it will still be fun to look back on and while I'm sure I look vastly different than I did four weeks ago, the reflections are still super relevant.

It'll be time for my thirty five weeks reflections in a few days so I figured I better actually finish this one up and hit publish.

First, the pictures:

30 Weeks!

30 Weeks with Graves and Babykins #3 
(Graves on the left; Sister Baby on the right)


And a bonus-- Peyton took this one of me fussing about something. I sort of look like I'm already in labor, yes?

Okay now some reflections:

1. During the first trimester when I was so sick every day and really had a a hard time getting off the couch, Peyton asked me what I'd be doing if I worked full time and it was on my mind constantly for awhile. I had sort of stopped dwelling on it, but when Peyton was sick with the flu recently I circled back around to his question (which I have, for the last six months, let myself get way more worked up over than I should have).

Honestly, I feel like I'm showing up in the exact same way I would if I were working- I'm sure I would take days off here and there but more often than not I'd push through. And I feel like more often than not, I push through here. I've done a lot of things in a lot of pain. I'm not wearing it as a badge of honor, but I do get defensive about it at times.

That said, I feel like I'm neglecting Graves and Annie in a big way. I can't imagine any job being more important to me than the one I'm doing so I assume that if I were working full time I would not be able to give it what I could give it at virtually any other point in my life because I physically haven't been able to give them what I've given them at virtually every other point in their lives. [I know this all sounds so melodramatic.]

Someone told me awhile back that she felt like her family was complete at present because she didn't think she could be as good a mom if she had one more. I've thought about that a lot and especially lately I've been thinking that even if I could handle parenting a large number of children, there's no way I could do this to Annie and Graves (and now our New Girl) again. I know it's only nine months, but it feels like nearly a year of their lives that I haven't been present at all in the way I want to be. I'm glad I did it one more time but I also have such a strong peace as the door closes on biological children. And I've been SO grateful for this because Peyton was very emphatic that round three was the final round. 

Imagine my absolute SHOCK when he said to me awhile back "Now Sweetie, take this with a grain of salt but I think I might like more babies". It didn't upset me at all- I feel like it's a very fluid thing and it's so fun to see us both moving closer to being on the same page. And I reminded him of all those children in foster care who need homes.  (And in the  interest of full disclosure, he's since reminded me that nothing is a definite.)

I'm fully aware that fostering and adoption could put me in this same mental/emotional space or worse, but it wouldn't have the same physical components that this has had, and I'm just really glad I have a peace about being done with that.

2.  As far as mental/emotional space goes, it's been a real mixed bag. I was so happy that I only truly cried once while we were in New York and they were mostly happy, if bittersweet, tears. I've had a LOT of good days lately. I've just felt good about things, about life. Confident even.

I did have an episode a few days ago over something unrelated to the pregnancy and several weeks ago I got myself real worked up because I was really wanting to consider birth photography and well, that's just not in our super streamlined budget. There are lots of things Peyton will be supportive of but I don't think he really wanted to fork over hundreds of dollars (like six or seven hundred) for something we didn't even know if we'd be happy with the results of. Which, rationally, I did understand.

The truth is, it was about more than just the pictures. The whole thing really started making me nervous. I realized there was NO way I could depend on Peyton to meet every need in the delivery room. I couldn't ask him to play the role he did in Graves's birth, plus the role of a doula, and a photographer.

I got so upset and literally cried for over an hour because I finally let myself really think about how Cookie won't be there this time. It felt like the loneliest feeling. NOW, I really need to clarify. I have a nice handful of really good, close, caring friends. I just don't know that most of them would be comfortable in this situation. I've tried to be very cognizant of that because I didn't want to put anyone in an awkward situation where they felt like they had to say yes.

3. Then I remembered Carrie and I talking a LONG time ago about how if either of us had another biological child (at that point I don't think we either one thought we would) we thought it would be really amazing to be in the room. Carrie hates awkward situations and she's not like major granola level crunchy (both of which I'd say of myself, for the record). Also, I'm guessing here but I feel like she's sort of like me in that we both hate to be naked like even when we're by ourselves. I guess modest is the word, but I don't totally feel like that fits. Basically, after I finally (very diplomatically) brought it up, Carrie pretty much summed it up perfectly "It is a vulnerable thing to ask someone. Birth is so deeply personal. I can't imagine anything more personal than watching someone give birth. Except maybe making the baby".

It was one of my favorite literal laugh out loud moments in a long time. Another big factor when I was thinking about who I could ask is that I did NOT want to put someone on the spot and I know some people would be uncomfortable with it themselves for all sorts of different reasons. The conversation with Carrie happened in a really organic, light hearted way (but also a way where we both felt the significance of cool it could be both) so I knew I wasn't putting her in a hard position where she couldn't say no.

I realized that Carrie is the perfect person to be in the room when our New Girl arrives. We've been through so much together and honestly, the very first time we met we had a pretty vulnerable conversation for strangers (short story: we talked about our sex lives with our infant daughters at a table in Newks about twenty minutes after we introduced ourselves). So, in that sense, she's always been one to put me at ease and it's such a huge honor she'll be there.

As I said, I'm slated to churn another one of these out in just a week or so and so I think I'll wrap it up there. 

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