Monday, March 26, 2012

A letter to Jade a week before she's due.

It's been a while...

Hmmmm. Between consulting, being a mom, being 7 and 8 (almost 9) months pregnant, prepping for Baby's arrival, and packing for a move (that got postponed just days before the scheduled moving day) I've been busy. And really tired.

I haven't written much about this pregnancy and I'm sad to admit that I'm just like almost every other parent on her second go at it...somehow this kiddo already is getting less attention than her sister got. It can't be helped, I guess.

So, here goes: a bit about this pregnancy.

Symptoms: I've had a little more aversion to certain foods, but nothing that's made me actually sick. No real cravings, although I really liked bread and cheese products early on and I've been enjoying spicy food quite a bit more. I've cut out wheat and dairy for the large part in this last trimester as I don't seem to be processing it as well as I did when I was pregnant with Lola. If anything, it's kept the weight gain in check. (Win!) Total weight gain (20ish lbs so far) has been about the same, but I did pack it on a bit earlier this time around. I blame the holidays. I've worked out regularly through out this pregnancy, just like with Lola, although not nearly as much and without the same intensity I was able to endure the first time. Something about already having a kid at home who demands a lot of my time and attention has really cut into my gym time this go around. I didn't feel this baby kick much until 20 or 21 weeks along and she isn't as hyper in her movements. Lots of slow, strong pushes and stretches rather than the bursts of acrobatics performed by Lola. The Ultrasound technician feels this baby is on the taller side (as evidenced by apparently longer legs), and while I'd agree that Baby 2 seems bigger than her sister I still can't imagine having anything other than a shrimpy kid with short legs. Like me. Like Lola. I have to assume that while Baby 2 may end up being a bigger baby, she'll still end up being a small kid. I've thrown up once, just like with Lola, although this time it was a result of the Flu and not related to being pregnant. Having the flu while pregnant proved to be akin to spending a few days in Hell. Lola knows to point to my belly when asked "where is Baby Jade," but otherwise I doubt she knows what's going on. Poor girl. Her world is about to be rocked. Luckily she's proven to have gentle and tender instincts around babies and is a good Junior Mommy to her dolls. Until she gets bored or distracted at which point she simply drops them and moves on. I'm most excited to see the bond my two girls develop with each other. I hate when people tell me my girls might hate each other. I acknowledge there will be fighting and periods of disagreement, but I'm confident they will become great friends and confidants. Even if it's only rooted in their shared resentment of their mother's shortcomings. :)

Speaking of their mother's failings...

Even though we planned to get pregnant, and even though it happened quicker than it did when we were trying with Lola, it took a long time to feel excited about this pregnancy. More specifically, to feel excited about having TWO kids. In fact, it really wasn't until about a week or so ago (thanks to a very special priesthood blessing from Kenny) that I finally felt okay about all this and even could honestly say that I was excited to meet this baby. Sad, huh? I wanted very badly for Lola to have a sibling close in age - a buddy. Or at least someone who will understand and relate to her. But I've been terrified about having to parent TWO kids. I'm not just saying that. I've had real, crippling anxiety over it. While Lola is a pretty easy kid, parenting is still work. And I've proven to be a lazy mom. As such, I've spent a lot of this pregnancy transferring the acknowledgement of my parental inadequacies with regards to Lola into feelings of guilt/frustration/fear about what I expect to be continued parental failings for Baby 2. After months of Lola being repeatedly sick with her ear infections and Kenny being gone on a few business trips early this year, I'll just say that January was a particularly tough month for me. I don't want to insult those who suffer from REAL, clinical depression, but there were some dark days. I hope Lola will forgive me. She watched way too many episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba that month. I hope Kenny will forgive me. I was unfair and unkind in my treatment of him too often. And the guilt and self-loathing has been more than I could handle at times.

February was better, and March has been better still - despite the craziness and changing plans. I had two wonderful baby showers and was spoiled with love and support from many. I am lucky. I accepted the showers with hesitation, feeling like it was not classy or that I was greedy to have a shower for a second child - especially one of the same gender. I really didn't need anything much for this kid. But people insisted and I realized that more than getting things for this baby, I really needed and benefited from the time given and generosity shown by so many. So Thank You to those who planned and attended the showers. I love you all.

I'm now due to welcome Jade Matilda in 8 days. While part of me still is in no rush for her to get here, I'm genuinely excited to meet her. And to mother her. I expect to fail in many areas and to still suffer from occasional self-loathing with regards to my parental shortcomings, but again I am grateful that she and Lola will at least have each other. That is the biggest reason I wanted a second child. To give Lola someone. And for that person to have Lola. Will we go for a third? Perhaps. Our game plan has always been "one at a time." In all I'm grateful that my body has allowed me this experience - to be pregnant - and that my pregnancies have been relatively easy. I know many who have not been so fortunate and my heart breaks for them. I fully realize what a blessing I have been given, and I don't want to soil it with complaints. I am grateful to have to companionship and support from an extremely patient and kind and thoughtful husband. How anyone does this alone is BEYOND me. I salute the women who do it, for whatever reason or circumstance. I'm grateful for the many ways we've been quietly blessed temporally as we've prepared to grow our family and welcome Jade. I'm still a little stressed about paying for this delivery and for the spike in rent as we relocate (finally) to a bigger space, but if I've learned anything these last few months it's that something will come along and we'll get by. I still hate the stress of not knowing exactly how, but I'm comforted at least in knowing that we will. Get by, that is. And that even if we're just "getting by" we will enjoy each other and our life.

So, Jade, as the countdown officially begins, let it be said that your mother is excitedly awaiting your arrival, is hoping all goes well, and is anxious to hold and love you and introduce you to your family who also already adores you.

I'm ready when you are.