Wednesday, September 23, 2009

"Tell me about the day before I was born..."

I've written before about the tradition that my mother and I have every year on my birthday, when she calls me to wish me "happy birthday" and tells me about the day I was born.

So if I have a similar tradition with The Joey, I probably won't tell her about checking into the hospital at 5 in the morning to be administered a dose of pitocin. I'll tell her about today. About having weird anxiety dreams about going to the hospital and having the nurses all be incompetent, half naked and incapable of answering my most basic questions. About spending the morning in a frenzy of cleaning and packing and laundry. Of going to Target to stock up on diapers and other stuff, only to have one of the fuel lines in my car split and gush gas all over the road, so that Jason and I broke down on the way to the mechanic.

My mechanic is an angel, and he drove over to pick me up so I wouldn't have to sit in the rain in a car filled with petroleum fumes the day before giving birth. He also called in a favor to get the tow truck guy to pick us up quickly and charge us a bare minimum for the tow. And he gave me a loaner so I'd be able to go get Zeke and still malke it to the airport on time to pick up my mom.

And we had a nice dinner of beef stew, and played with Zeke and looked at the enormous pile of baby clothes that my mom brought.

I hadn't been nervous all day. But as it got later and later, and I was going through piles of pink onesies and washcloths and little newborn caps, I started to get this tight feeling in my chest. Anxiety.

Knowing that The Joey is coming tomorrow, I've been very aware of everything that's been happening and everything I'm feeling. It's actually very strange to have known in advance when she was going to come, because every day has felt more and more imbued with importance and significance. And today is the last day in my life that I will ever be pregnant.

The last belly shot of my life

Which is fine with me. Jason and I have talked about it and are happy with having two kids. Maybe if I had started having children earlier, I would have maybe had another, being able to space them out more. But I'm going to be 40 on my next birthday, and if I wait the amount of time to have another I'd want to wait, I'd be having my next kid at 43 or 44, and I just don't want to do that. I'm too tired.

But it's still strange to know that I'm done reproducing. It's such a basic, elemental part of being human, and now I'm done with it.

And in addition to feeling like this massive existential milestone is passing, I'm so aware of this huge change in my life and in my relationship with Zeke in particular. He's not going to be my only baby and I'm not going to be all his anymore, and it's made me emotional and weepy.

It won't be just us anymore

Since I go into the hospital so early, when I put Zeke to bed tonight, it was the last time I'll see him before giving birth. For some reason, it made my cry and cry. Everything is making me weep. What if I'm no good at parenting two kids? What if Zeke freaks out and resents us for giving him a sibling? What if I can't handle any of it?

I'm so excited to meet my daughter. But I'm also terrified.

Though I guess when I tell The Joey about the day before she was born, I'll leave that part out. Because I imagine by then, the feeling will have passed.


  1. You will be just as terrific a mom of two as you are of one....congratulations on all of your many blessings. You will figure it all out - like you always do.

    Love from A &D

  2. Congratulations! I'm thrilled for you - it's such an amazing time in life so enjoy every second!

  3. Anonymous10:33 AM

    Zeke is going to be so excited to have a lil sister around. You may not get him to sleep in his room for a while. Don't be surprised if you find him on the floor next to her crib. Big brothers are protective like that.



  4. Best of everything to you and your family, Wendy. I'm sure you just described what every mom feels before having her second child. But I have no doubt you will handle everything beautifully.

    Can't wait to see pix of the Joey!

  5. Susan O.7:39 PM

    OK, so I'm reading this after Josie was born but it makes me cry! I think about how Cate is my last and sometimes it makes me sad also. The feeling of a baby inside is just the most amazing feeling ever. i'm so glad Josie's arrival went so smoothly- I'm sure Zeke is going to be a fantastic big brother. Hope to see you soon.