smile and shrug

…what else can I do?

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I love her too

Her father sleeps on the impossibly narrow emergency gurney they squeezed into the room.  Her mother has gone home to shower and gather supplies for yet another night captive in this tiny emergency room triage bay that isn’t meant for sleepovers but has become one regardless.

I sit quietly with this girl I’ve come to love, on the end of the standard hospital bed made up now with her own special fuzzy blanket, special pillows, and assorted stuffed companions.  It will be her second night here.  A board game is between us and she studies it with intense thought.  We don’t talk about why she is here, but I know we are both thinking about it.  We don’t talk about what worries and struggles she is facing, has faced, has tried so valiently to manage, but we are both thinking about them.

I also think about her parents.  The man I love, and the woman who used to be his wife.  Both gentle, kind, smart, loving, dedicated parents – both distraught and broken as they watch their youngest child, their one girl cross legged and small in this emergency room, on hold and waiting endless hours to be moved to a different place entirely.  I don’t know what to do for any of them except to be here.  To sit and watch and wait with them, to let them sleep and shower and escape however briefly they can, and to watch over this girl for them.  I love her too, and I think of my own children so far away from me and the chronic worry I have over them and vow to give this one girl all that I can while her momma is away and hope that somewhere, in some other time, someone may do the same for my children.

When her mother comes back, looking no more rested or refreshed, our girl breaks a little and a flood of worries erupts from her.  The three of us encircle her, answering the questions we can and reassuring her about the ones we can’t yet answer.  The light from the bathroom dimly lights the far side of the room and her bed is in shadows but her eyes peirce through that darkness anyway.  Can she see us the way we see her?  We encourage her, shore up her bravery, reframe her fears for her, we get her to laughing, we are laughing.  This girl laughing is the sound of life – a life we are all struggling to ensure remains with us.

I wonder what fears and worries her momma will battle through the night while her daughter sleeps.   No, I don’t wonder, I know them all too well.  She is not my girl, but I love her too.  I lie awake most of that night thinking about all of them for myself while her father sleeps beside me, his hand still clutching mine like I am his anchor in this storm.  He has often been my anchor in my own storm and if I can hold his hand while he sleeps and I can take on the task of worrying for him, it’s the very least I can do.  I love his girl too.




Pink or Blue?

I am now at 20 weeks and am nearly dancing with anticipation of my scheduled ultrasound.  I WANT TO KNOW WHO THIS BABY IS!!!  Tomorrow is the day and I’m half expecting that little roo here will be facing the wrong way or be doing the “secret legs crossed” manuever and when I leave the appointment I’ll still be in the dark.  That would be so tragic!

Everyone I work with is just as anxious as I am to know – and even more exciting is trying to plan a really fun way to tell all the kids whether they are having a brother (my guess) or a sister.  I want this baby to be healthy, whole, and really it doesn’t matter if it’s a He version or a She version, so long as this roo grows healthy all safe and protected in my belly and then comes out into my arms at just the right time.  But it would be convenient to know what to buy!

I finally got to introduce my doula and my guy to each other.  It might be weird to say that my relationship with my doula is almost more important to me than my relationship with my guy, but right now I’ve known her longer than him and my innate level of trust and security is pretty darn high with her.  So I didn’t place much merit on whether or not he’d like her, or vice versa, but I was moved to a whole new level of comfort and confidence to have him totally rave about her afterward.  He was smitten with her calm competent nature and the overall vibe she  exudes.    This is going to go better than I imagined.

Now if baby will just cooperate tomorrow and expose those secret things to me…

Prompt: Something I love about myself

I love little baby ducks, old pickup trucks, little fuzzy pups, and life…

I remember learning that song in elementary school chorus about one gazillion years ago.   Well, maybe not THAT long ago, but still… it has stuck with me through being a teenager, a young mom, a mom of a high school graduate, a divorce, and now this pregnancy.  That isn’t what I love about myself, my recall of that song per se, but I wanted to share it with you.

I love THAT about myself.  My desire to share.  If I find something heart-touching, funny, inspiring, thoughtful – whatever – I want to share it.  And my joy when someone else loves it too, my joy for them, is real and true.

I’m not always good about sharing my actual cookies or ice cream – don’t get between a pregnant woman and her snacks, you know?  But sharing a song, a poem, a website, a joke – I’m all over it.  Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not sending those email chain letters, I’m not forwarding nastygram text messages to my entire contact list, I’m not even on any social media sites and “like”ing things.  I’m more real and subtle than that.  I’m more likely to find a show on Netflix and insist you watch it with me and then rejoice when you are as hooked as I am.  I’m more likely to sit you down and show you youtube clips like this one or this one just to hear you laugh.  I will tell you stupid knock knock jokes or give you song lyrics that will stay with you allllll day.  I will lend you books.  I like sharing, and THAT is what I love about myself.

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