Posted by Duff

I originally posted this the night my water broke with Atticus, before it broke. Someone may even have read it before I took it down and posted “Belaboring My Labor.” instead.

I think one of the reasons journaling (our blog is one part journal, one part baby book and one part exhibitionism for me) is so precious is that it allows us to step back into a moment forever gone, into a part of ourselves a little more innocent. In that look back, we are an older sibling to ourselves. We are spectators yelling at the characters on a movie screen, “Don’t go in there!”

I’m grateful, now, that I recorded this chapter’s unknowingness, because in just eight weeks, I already have answers to some of these questions. I already know Atticus some, even though there is so much more to know.

But on May 10th:

MC, who are you in there? I really can’t imagine. Right now you are still a hazy profile, some feet curled under my rib cage, a tiny elbow stretching outward against my belly. Someone very thirsty. A huge fan of balsamic vinaigrette.

Will you have your father’s hair? His excellent sense of direction? I’m sorry that it looks like you have my feet but maybe there’s a genetic connection between square feet and a good memory. 

Will you be arriving in the next couple of days, or will you have to be coaxed out in a couple of weeks?  Just let me know when you’ve had a chance to look at your day planner.  I can clear my schedule.

I have been watching the clock for days. At this point in my pregnancy with The Dervish…scratch that. I wasn’t pregnant anymore. I was holding The Dervish, having just met her. I’ve never been this pregnant before, and I start doing mental newborn head size calculations based on the calendar date.  Best not to think too deeply on this one.

I’m jarred from these thoughts by a jab, slow and deliberate, as MC stretches, and remember that time really is crawling by. I am antsy, but I am very lucky to see this time as precious, to squeeze The Dervish despite her protests. To watch her pad across the wood floor sporting pjs and bedhead, determined to have pancakes for breakfast.

Before she rounds the corner, I take a mental picture of her, of us, before this next step, which will change us and our perspectives, forever.

Everyone says that before we know it, we’ll never remember what it was like before we were a family of four. I simply can’t picture MC in my arms, strapped to my chest, sleeping in a crib or peeking at me from the  swing that currently stands stationary, expectant, in the corner of our living room.

Still harder to imagine:  Personality. Preferences. Another little voice. Another point of view. Tendencies that are already in place, waiting to unfold. 

I put a hand on my belly. MC pushes back with teeny tiny toes. It’s so quiet. It’s so close.