Friday, September 23, 2011

On the mend

Sweet Simon is on the mend. I actually saw him smile a few times today and he laughed when I tickled his toes during dinner. It's been stressful to see him so listless and so unlike I have known him these past 8 months. I am so grateful he's feeling better and that my kids are generally very healthy. If you thought I was a bad sport when I got sick, come visit me when I have sick kids. It ain't pretty.

I also just heard that one of my friends just had her baby after 3 hours of pushing, which resulted in a C-section. I saw a picture of the beautiful, full-head-of-hair baby girl, and heard that everyone is over the moon. When I heard about the labor, I thought it sounded a little brutal and Jeff suggested I call my friend to give her moral support around her labor.

I realized tonight that I never think about my labors anymore. After Sadie I was so upset for SO LONG (until Simon was born 18 months later) about the circumstances of her birth (the C-section) that I could hardly talk about it without welling up and feeling really intense emotions (shame, sadness, grief). I am happy that's not how I think of my children's births anymore. I don't think about the panic attack I had in the operating room or the long road of healing after a C-section. Now when I think about Sadie's birth, I think about how she showed us her personality within hours of her birth. I think about her tiny body curling up beside me while we figured out nursing. And I think about Jeff and I and all of our beloved and fawning visitors that July.

With Simon, I think about my mom coming to Chicago in a gigantic blizzard and how cute Simon was all swaddled up. I think about his tiny cries and his personality, which, like Sadie's unfurled in those earliest days of his life.

And, since I am reminiscing, I remember the brownies that we had in our hospital room when Simon was born-- given to us by Mary N., when we were unable to stay for dinner the night Simon was born. I remember videotaping Sadie meeting Simon and the mini-tantrum she had when we wouldn't give her the video camera. I remember Jeff showing off Simon's tarry stool to his bachelor friend Martin 4 days after Simon was born. Poor Martin. Scarred for life.

With Sadie's birth, I still remember my first shower after the operation and the daffy feeling in my head when I was taking the Norco. I remember that all the food came from the hospital cafeteria with a tally of the calories on a helpful little slip of paper they tucked under the fork. I still laugh when I think about those calories. I just gave birth to my child after being cut open for the first time in my life, do you think I give a fuck about how many calories are in my lasagna dinner?

I didn't.

The sweetness lasts. I think I will call my friend and tell her. Because there is nothing a brand new mom wants more than a phone call with advice.


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