pure magic & sentimentality

One year ago today, I found out I was pregnant.  It was a different experience altogether from the day I found out I was pregnant with Theo, just 14 months earlier.  On July 6, 2009, I jumped for joy.  I cried tears of happiness.  We hugged and high fived and couldn’t wait to tell our friends and family.  That day changed our lives forever.

So did September 14, 2010.  A year ago today, I suspected it due to some implantation bleeding a couple days earlier.  I took a test.  I was right.  I showed it to R and said “I hope you’re happy.”  Then I went to my room, laid on the bed, and cried sobbed.  Not because I didn’t want Dexter.  I always knew I wanted another baby.  But we were planners and we weren’t ready.  Theo was 6 months old, still an infant.  Barely even sitting up.  Still spitting up.  Still nursing.  R sat on the couch holding Theo, lost for words.  I don’t think he ever came back to comfort me.  I don’t think I wanted him to.  He was dealing with the news in his own quiet way.

I was immediately filled with self-doubt.  I was terrified.  I was certain that I would never be able to handle 2 babies at once.  I didn’t want Theo to be the big kid in the family at 14 months.  I didn’t want to take time away from him.  I didn’t want to take time away from the new baby because Theo’s needs would still be so great.  Nothing about it seemed fair to either baby and truth is, I was upset devastated.  I didn’t want to go through another pregnancy and childbirth and recovery so soon, especially since I still had a baby to take care of. 

With Theo, we couldn’t wait to tell everyone.  Our dreams were all coming true.  With Dexter, we felt embarrassed for letting this happen.  We thought people would say “you’re an idiot.” Maybe they did, behind our backs.  We had wanted to move into a bigger house before we had our second baby.  We waited to tell our families and very best friends until I was 10 weeks and told everyone else in the next few weeks following that.  I tried to lighten the mood with a funny photo card.

“eek!  We hope your Halloween isn’t as frightening as ours.  Seriously Scared, R, ~C~, and Theo”
Well, as it turns out, it’s a lot funnier when everyone gets it.  It was hit or miss whether people understood what the card was saying, but that’s how we told most everyone.   
In time, we got used to the idea of another baby and even began to see the positives in having our kids so close together.  We were thankful that we were able to get pregnant easily as opposed to the struggle we had to conceive Theo.  We were thrilled that I had another healthy pregnancy, complicated only by a mild case of gestational diabetes.  We were glad our kids would be close in age so that they could someday become playmates and hopefully best friends.  We were relieved that this happened at a reasonable time in our lives, if there is such a thing, when we could afford it, had a decent place to bring the baby home to, were settled in our relationship, and knew that we would have another baby eventually anyway.  We realized that the timing could have been much worse and began to grow excited about our new little bundle.
By the time Dexter Jay came along on May 13, 2011, we were ecstatic and unable to imagine our lives without him.  I still feel that way.  I hate that I had so many negative feelings throughout the pregnancy but that’s just the way it was.  I don’t think it makes me any less of a parent to him.  I love him every bit as much as I love Theo.
1 week old

Dexter Jay is 4 months old now and at his appointment last week, I was surprised that he only weighed 12 lbs, 15 oz.  He only gained a pound and a half in two months.  Aren’t babies supposed to double their birth weight by 4 months?  Because if so, he should weigh 15 pounds now.  Makes me feel kinda crappy, like I’m not feeding him enough or something.  But I assume he’d tell me if he was hungry.  Maybe he’s just too weak to cry.  He be ‘aight.

I’m not complaining that he’s still my little guy because I know pretty soon, he’ll be talking back and wreaking havoc, just like Theo.  Every day I see him rolling over, trying to sit up, staring at our plates during meals, and grabbing onto toys.  I may as well be watching him graduate from college or get married.  Feels like time is slipping right through my fingers.  Especially when so many people I know are pregnant right now.  It was like all the sudden, there were 8 people having babies.  Most are first time moms, which makes me feel jealous.  But WHY!?

I guess because I know that special time in my life is over.  Not to say that our future doesn’t hold even more special times as a family…but there’s something about being pregnant, and I’m pretty sure pregnancy is all but a memory for me.  My second pregnancy was a blur, in the midst of caring for an infant who turned into a toddler somewhere along the way.  There’s just something about expecting that first baby.  The second baby is special too, in a different way.  It’s because you know what to appreciate more.  And you know that the things you don’t appreciate will be a memory in the blink of an eye, which makes the whole thing more bearable somehow.  Expecting a baby is this magical state of being and when I look back on it and it makes me sentimental.  Those irretrievable, first foggy weeks full of figuring things out.  Getting to know your new baby.  Snuggling at the most inopportune times in the middle of the night.  Knowing that the only thing that baby wants and needs in the world is you.  It’s. Pure. Magic.

I get a bittersweet feeling every time I drive by the hospital where my kids were born.  I remember being admitted both times and all the anticipation that came with signing all that paperwork.  There’s a certain calm you feel the second time, but the anticipation is the same.   Knowing what my friends are about to encounter as they journey through their own pregnancies, I feel envious.  I beg them to embrace every moment.  Pregnancy is not a glamorous thing, nor is parenting.  But there just something about the whole thing that makes me feel…sentimental.  Try as I might, I just can’t find the words to really explain it, so I’ll stop here.
We’ve come a long way, baby.
Cheers to 1 year of our Dexter Jay surprise,