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Archive for the ‘Pregnancy’ Category

I dreamt all three of my children before they were born.

 

Now don’t click that little x. I am the most skeptical, non-hocus-pocus person you’ll ever meet. Promise. It comes standard with my RBF. (That was for a special friend, but I figure you may as well enjoy a laugh at my expense too.)

 

So, sanity aside, I did dream up all three of my kids before I ever met them. At three different stages of pregnancy, I had three different dreams about three different babies, at three different ages. My oldest was a newborn in my dream, my middle, three months and my daughter was just shy of a year.

 

Of course I dream all the time, but these dreams were different. They were tangible. In them, I could see, hear and taste as if awake. I could feel the hairs rise on the back of my neck as the downy silk of their cheeks brushed mine, I understood their dispositions and knew who I’d be meeting when the day finally came.

 

I would wake changed from when I’d gone to sleep. I’d come to know the tots forming in my belly. I’d been privy to what my future held. I’d been blessed with an extra day of their lives.

 

I can tell you there were no surprises. My first came early, slipping into our world as quietly as any living, breathing thing could. Our second, on his due date, with a head full of ebony hair and enough breath in his lungs to make up for his brother. The third, our daughter, swooped in on a magic carpet large enough to carry her and her big personality.

 

And I’d met them all before.

 

I am reminded of this because I was given another gift last night. Again, an extra day. Needless to say (I hope really hope it’s needless to say) I am not pregnant, but I had one of these dreams. Different, tangible, unmistakable.

 

Ava was about three years old. Her hair was cut into the short bob she used to wear and she wore a baseball cap. I could only see the back of her. Her squidgy little feet were covered in sand and she was struggling to get across a rocky patch. I asked her if she wanted me to pick her up and she said; “Could you, mumma,” in that tiny little voice she used to have.

Ava in her "Ash" cap

Ava in her “Ash” cap

 

My heart skipped and as I scooped her up, she melted in just like she was a part of me. It was one of those good holds. My arms wrapped under her teeny tushe and air could not have come between us.

 

“You’re the best mumma. I love you so much.” She whispered. And with the bubbles on her lips popping in my ear and the warmth of her comforting breaths, I felt the hair, once again, stand on the back of my neck.

 

I used to chalk my unique imaginings up to the whacky hormones of pregnancy, but after last night I know, dreams are just wishes your heart makes.

 

 

 

 

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Well, it’s pouring.  No, let me change that to bucketing.  For some, a depressing downer of a wet day, but for me, a perfect opportunity to hole up fireside and delve into post number fifty-one.

I’m not sure why it’s taken me so long to come to this place and point for inspiration.  After all, I love this lady, her story, her blog and her wonderful book.  She came highly recommended by a friend of mine a few years ago and let me tell you, one taste and I was hooked.

A ‘foodie’ I am not, but I do eat the stuff and I find it’s much, much better when delicious.  (Simply picturing me winking here is sufficient because when I actually do it, I look a bit like my back just went out)  I digress…

This Superwoman does it all; blogs, cooks, writes books, snagged a husband is a wife, runs businesses, grows babies, photographs all of the above and looks fabulous while doing it.

I’d like to say I adore this (insert one specific thing about her here) the most, but I can’t.  The whole package is just crazy palatable.  Her writing style is seducingly smooth; her subject matter, quite literally devourable.

Spending endless hours in the scullery, or simply eating what comes your way, this master of many trades will arrive at your heart’s doorstep whether she journeys there mentally or digestively.

The site: Orangette, the heroine: Molly Wizenberg.

Molly started her blog in 2004 and published her book in 2009.  Her blog is still going strong and her book is a must-read.  She connects food, dishes and recipes with reflections and her descriptives will have you salivating.  The cuisine is undeniably delectable but honest accounts of her days in Paris, her father and his passing will have your heart aching.

Her very first blog post is here and a glimpse into her book can be found here.

This post wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t acknowledge her grace and generosity.  In March 2011, I emailed Molly, asking if she’d meet in an alley at Delancey (which she happens to own) during one of the nights I’d be in town.  I never expected an answer, but thought it would be a good story, me explaining the nutty thing I’d attempted to pull off.

As luck would have it, she replied.

Within an hour…maybe less…I had an email from Molly Wizenberg saying; “Sure.”

I was ahh-mazed, ahh-stounded and ahh-bsolutely freaking out.

*Side Note: I am in no way encouraging anyone to follow my lead.  This was over a year ago and ‘Mrs. Wizenberg’ has since started a second book, had a baby and opened another bar/restaurant (named Essex, FYI) and is, presumably, much, much busier than she was way back then.

I was very touched by her kindness and will never forget the evening or the experience.  If you ever happen to read this, oh great one, I thank you from the bottom of my writer-reader heart.

By the way…the food just happened to be top-notch.

Molly and Hazy hangin’ Delancey style.

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Eyes half open, a long, heavy breath escapes me.  I heave my body out of bed and as I hobble to the bathroom I contemplate how long I will hurt.  At least fifteen minutes, I decide, before blood flow and juices will redistribute throughout my joints and ease the ache.

My hands lather up into soapy mitts and I yawn as the warm water washes away a few of the morning’s wounds.

Downstairs, the sun has yet to rise as I finish sorting lights from darks and colors from towels but I feel quiet relief as I tap the play button and listen to our laundry embark on its journey to clean.

Hurriedly, I run the hoover over the Berber hoping to lift at least half of the animal hair in my ten second tidy and I thank the powers that be for Lysol Wipes while I do a snappy sweep of the main toilet.

My shoulders throb more than they should as I scoop the litter box, add clean sand, refresh three water bowls and fill up the Kibbles ’n Bits…in triplicate.

A pattern emerges as I throw three pellets into three fish bowls and toss three sandwiches into three brown paper bags; the chill boxes long since deemed uncool.

My joints have eased, if only slightly, so I bound up the stairs with only minutes to dress.  I paint my lips crimson and pause only to ensure the lines are crisp and precise.

Leaving for work, I tiptoe into the warmth of three different bedrooms and watch over three children, different, yet somehow the same.  I press my lips down firmly on each of their sleepy and incredibly soft cheeks and leave a distinct and definite impression.

I inhale peace; they will understand I was there.

I swallow sorrow; proof wiped away, three times over.

Proof Times Three

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I wasn’t a good pregnant person. I didn’t jog or do Yoga. I didn’t eat right.  In fact, I was so ill I barely ate at all.  There was no such thing as morning sickness for me.  It ran rampant twenty-four hours a day and I lost twenty-three pounds off my already light frame. I broke out like a puberty-riddled teen. I wasn’t radiant and I sure as hell didn’t shine with a maternal glow.

But, I did love my baby. After all, I’d beaten the odds. When I was nineteen, I was told I’d probably never have one. A Bicornuate and Retroverted uterus were the culprits and quashers of my dreams. Although the odds weren’t in my favor, if I wanted a baby, I’d have one. I somehow just knew it.

When I was twenty-five, validation appeared as a double blue line. As simply as that, I was pregnant. But getting there was to be the only simple thing about it. Three weeks after my discovery everything went sideways.

The sickness was severe and the weakness, extreme. I never dreamed anything so wonderful could be so gut wrenching awful. I visited the Doctor week after week, presenting with a new ailment each and every time.

I’d known pregnant women. Women, who had worked through their entire pregnancies and here I was, unable to even lift my head off the pillow. How did they do it? And some more than once! I knew one thing for sure; I’d never be doing it again.

The five-month mark crept up painfully slowly, and as it arrived, it brought what anyone with child dreads…warmth…hot and sticky between my legs. It was that moment I realized how smug I’d been. Who was I to question…no, challenge a Doctor? Who was I to believe I would beat the odds?

My heart ached like I’d never known. In one fell swoop, I wanted that baby so much I would do anything to keep it. Simultaneously, I wished I’d never known what it was to feel it twisting and turning in my belly, convincing me my womb had become its home. This loss would be so much more now than if I’d never gotten a glimpse of what could’ve been.

As it turned out, my baby decided to hang on. And, if it could, I would. And we did. Together, we got a little better each day…used to each other, less…savage. I promised nourishment, rest and optimism and it pledged to dig in and plant itself. And, it worked…until five weeks before it was due.

At thirty-five weeks, the day after I’d completed prenatal classes, my water broke…in a big way. What seemed like gallons splashed onto the bathroom floor. The baby, not ready to be unearthed, was transverse and was pulled, rather than pushed into the world by Caesarean Section.

Again, I was hit with the inadequacy of my female parts as they put my baby in danger. But, despite the nurse’s warnings that my little one would be gray and sickly, his lanugo-covered, velvet skin was shiny and pink.  He looked up at me, his tiny, round head perfect, his eyes, big and ocean blue. We knew we’d done it…and I couldn’t wait to do it again.

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