Well, tomorrow is May 15, my due date. Things are getting kind of... how shall I put it?... intense... around here. We are bracing for what is about to come. We are so ready for this baby.
The photo above was taken in early September when we were at Assateague Island (see posts from September 4). It was an incredibly great weekend for our family. Just incredibly, incredibly great. By the end of the weekend we were all rejuvenated and exhausted at the same time. I remember sleeping in the car for over three hours straight on the drive home -- the boys were sleeping too -- but Braydon and I thought it was so odd (very, very rare) for me to be so sound asleep for so long in the car. Little did we know then that I was pregnant. What a surprise when we found out the following weekend -- on Saturday night, September 8 -- from a store-bought pregnancy test, that we were going to have a baby. I had been dragging and queasy and feeling funky all week. Braydon bought the test on a whim thinking, 'could she be pregnant????' But neither of us really thought it could be. But it was. Talk about shocking! We were totally and completely utterly shocked. And now, nine months later, here we are. Hunkering down, trying to hold strong together, just waiting for her arrival.
The picture of K & O above portrays perfectly to me what it feels like they're doing right now. When I think about what they're going through, I think about this photo in my mind. They are so anxious and so excited and so nervous and so full of anticipation about this huge life event that is about to unfold. In the face of it they pull together, sit tight, and face the wave head-on. The past few days they've been on edge-- Kyle, especially, has been melting down left and right. They are just little bundles of raw nerves and emotions, so ready for this waiting-for-Baby-Sister phase to be done. So ready for her to, as they put it, "come out." In the past 24 hours we've been talking about it a lot with them. They verbalize many, many things about their feelings. They're frustrated that she's not born yet; they're worried she won't be born; they're worried she won't be able to "really be theirs" when she's born; they're worried Mommy and Papi won't be their Mommy and Papi anymore after she's born; they're nervous about the baby breast feeding; they're nervous about Papi feeding the baby a bottle; they're anxious about Mommy having to be in the hospital; they're frustrated that they don't know how much longer it will be; they're excited about the baby coming soon; they're "super excited" about bringing the baby home; they're jealous that their friend at school now has his baby sister and they don't have theirs yet; they feel like they "can't wait any more" and they feel like "it is taking too long." Talking about it really seems to help. The more we talk about it, the calmer and more even-keeled our emotionally charged boys are. So we talk about it. A lot. Mostly, though, I just see and sense their inner selves hunkering down. None of us know -- really -- what this new chapter will bring. It is so unknown for all of us. But for K & O especially, it is so very unknown. They are so incredibly excited and wanting this, but so incredibly bracing for whatever it may be too. Not really knowing. It is just like that photo above. They so love the splash and salt and rush and strength and full-sensation of that big wave crashing over them. They anticipate face-forward and eyes wide open the power of it, the adventure, the excitement, the drama, the life-force of it. They pull tight together in anticipation -- their natural instinctive and learned reaction to all such things. And yet there they sit, two tiny little guys, amidst the hugeness of it all, the gravity of it, everything swirling around them, two little souls, trying to hold steady on shifting ground, just hoping that Mommy and Papi are right there behind them. But not turning back. They are so strong and so fragile all at once. They are so individual and so united all at once. They are so full of all that is good, hard, blissful, and scary in life... all at once. And the wave crashes on them. And they scream with thrill and squint their eyes and spit out the salt and run back to hunker down for the next wave.
It does feel now that Baby Sister will come at any moment. The physical signs are all there (according to me and my doctor). The emotion of it is in full swing, clearly. And Braydon and I are hunkering down too. It feels imminent. It feels scary. It feels content. It feels intense. It feels certain and uncertain. I remember when we looked at that pregnancy test in September and it was -- shockingly -- positive. We were in our bedroom and the boys were asleep in their beds. My first reaction was to realize that tears were springing from my eyes. I was surprised at myself because they were tears of sheer happiness. My very first conscious thought was, "Yes, this is exactly right, now our family will be complete." The thought surprised me. I can't explain why I would have that feeling. But I still do. This feels like the completing of our family. No matter how unplanned or how illogical... or how unusual our family will be... this will -- at least for as far as our minds' eyes can see -- complete our family. This big wave is about to hit. We hunker down and wait. So much uncertainty swirls around us. Only two things are for certain: life for us four is about to get even more rich, and this little baby is going to have quite an interesting life.