Weds 1:06am September 2nd, 2015: Why oh why did I have that shot of Cuban coffee tonight at 9pm with D and my in-laws? Why do I ever drink coffee? Now I have this tummy ache and while waiting for it to subside I eat up Facebook and Instagram and post post POST without regard to how I might be perceived. I want to share and I want to connect - this is hard when you’re postpartum. Today marked the 10th day I’ve been outside since laboring and giving birth on July 31st so I take all the social or social media interactions I can. And then - none at all.
I’m drawn to all these stories of breastfeeding and babies and human rights and sightings of a Blue Whale and I come to Gratitude. A short film about women thinking back on what they wished they had done more of. One says kissing her baby good night and another talks about cuddling her baby before they were all grown up. Just yesterday D and I noticed that Vee grew from the morning to the evening. Everyone says they grow up before you know it but I didn’t know it would literally happen in front of me in one day - in a week.
At 2 weeks (or was it 3?) I lamented the fact that Vee was already bigger than he was at day 1. Of course he’s going to get bigger! I want him to get bigger. But there’s that feeling that I Didn’t Cherish Him Enough or sit with the experience long enough. What is enough? Wanting his snuggles and also wanting to sketch a drawing, to color, wanting a hot shower. Oh yes, and wanting to eat.
As I sit on the toilet, I cry watching this video of the woman wishing to cuddle her child again and go and cuddle my own small big baby who is 4 weeks and (now) 6 days old. D fell asleep, in his clothes, next to him. They are both dreaming. They are so beautiful. I feel like all my dreams have come true and yes, my heart is exploding. I grab anything now, a onesie, a burp cloth, to wipe away my tears. None of these details matter.
Losing Little Lentil meant losing a part of my soul. I know that I love and appreciate Vee even more because I’ve had a miscarriage, because I lost a baby. When my dad died 13 years ago, although I had plans to study abroad again (and did), I almost didn’t. My initial feeling was to “settle down” and have kids. I don’t know why I felt this, I just did. Life can be gone so quickly and unexpectedly. I knew I wanted a child to be apart of mine.
But with all my long term relationships I questioned if I really wanted a baby. I questioned and questioned - I had the luxury and privilege of questioning over the span of a decade. In the past I even felt that I would be contributing to the ravaging of the earth, to the virus that is humankind, by having a child. And then we got pregnant with Little Lentil, who was an accident, a surprise. For 3 days I considered abortion a plausible and reasonable response. And then I didn’t. And then we were completely in love with this growing creature, the size of a lentil, whose heartbeat moved and moved me. And then I had a miscarriage and my heart broke like it did, but different, when my dad was torn from my life. After that, D and I both knew without a doubt that we wanted a baby.
I cry almost daily about how grateful I am for Vee and just as often for my grief for Little Lentil. Most nights when I’m feeding Vee and he’s taken a break and we’re looking at one another I tell Vee, I love you. Thank you for coming into my life. Thank you for making me and daddy your parents. Thank you for choosing us. Thank you for giving us this opportunity. We are so lucky. We love you so much. You’ve changed my life.