announcement

while i didn’t get my this is my postpartum post typed up for this week yet, i did get birth announcements designed and ordered. only 6 weeks into dap jo’s life. not bad.  i present you, oh internet, with the digital version:

daphne

 

Advertisements

this is my postpartum

this is
week four of
my postpartum
 photo AAAFD1F3-0756-45A0-B7A3-07BB9A5A1A70-29663-000004A5945DC440_zps1ac2b71d.jpg photo 35049D3C-9A02-4679-BD42-6271D42773ED-29663-000004A5AD537BB1_zps6cd0e56c.jpg photo B08DFF51-4416-40BF-B7BE-873515217474-26822-000004012A0DE92A_zpsf2f7fd8c.jpg

 photo 153ABB08-C239-43B8-80E5-5E52A34D8E4D-26822-00000400B5D9EC24_zpse4041fb5.jpg

i am too tired and busy to put words together coherently now. if this makes no sense it’s because the children have taken over. week 4 was my first week with both my girls under my care for the majority of their hours. husbeau is working 12 hour days, 6 days a week, which means i’m working that too. he and i shared an extended hug the other night and i told him i couldn’t tell if we were still hugging or if we’d just fallen asleep standing up leaning into one another…

this is the story of most of the parenting world, right? stretched to their limits but somehow digging down deep and coming up with more to give.

so yes, darla was back for week four of daphne’s life which means we were back to being on the go and i have once again been relegated to the holder of found items on walks. it’s worked out pretty well but leaves me wondering how this will all shake out when dap jo becomes more than just an accessory to darla’s life. or rather an accessory to me…which leads me to how we got through this first week of single-parenting a 5 1/2 year age gap….

babywearing!

i know, babywearing is one of those things that crunchy communities talk and talk about leaving the rest of you feeling bored out of your mind. but i couldn’t be more thankful that i somehow stumbled upon babywearing in darla’s first weeks. you see, strollers suck for city life. and i have never, ever been strong enough to carry a baby in a car seat carrier. i don’t know how all these tiny women are doing that! being able to wear daphne is the only way i could fathom being able to keep my active older, well, active.

 photo BD9A1C46-B023-44BA-B915-F7853BD665E7-29663-000004A588918068_zpsdda0e331.jpg

it allows for naps at the park snuggled with ma and discrete nursing

 photo FF7174F3-FA7B-401F-A1FC-E66AECD8397F-29663-000004A5830F9EE9_zpsfccd20a1.jpg

which then allows for journaling and listmaking.

 photo 58EAE512-14FA-4529-8E73-5022DD3492D2-33440-00000552FF263AEA_zpsbca03f49.jpg

 it allows me to tackle what chores i can.

 photo 40DACC99-A1EE-4850-A354-AFD7E8362A58-29663-000004A57D5DCC7C_zpse2e61d72.jpg

 it allows me to keep the little one close for baby gazing.

 photo EDC0A74D-D9F7-4353-B51E-6C47B2C24C3A-33440-000005530461413B_zpse061b620.jpg

more specifically, chunky baby buns gazing. so squishy!

so, maybe you’re wondering how i’m holding up…

20140819-124912.jpg

^^^ there you go! ^^^

overall i’m doing great. pretty good. really ok. not that bad. breathing, i think.

ha. i kid. things are what they are and what i have to say is that i’m enjoying this time in life. it’s not exactly great. it’s not exactly bad. it is what it is and that’s somewhere in between. what i want to remember is how overcome i am on a daily basis for how beautiful and filled with love my life is now.  i don’t know, i guess that’s what i see in that woman’s face up there.

when i get extra tired one of my eyes always sags more than the other. we’re sleeping in good chunks but have reached the point in time when too many nights of broken rest are the same as not getting rest at all. so i’m tired and stretched but i still find a raw beauty in all that.

plus my hair is still most excellent. i’m saving up all my postpartum emotions for when my hair starts falling out. waaahhh.

*wish us luck with week five which sees us prepping to send darla to kindergarten. verklempt!*

about a girl

seven years ago today a man came to visit me. he was living in new york city and i was living in dc. we had met a month before, spent a few brief hours together and then parted ways as he hopped on a bus back to the big apple. half of me thought i would never see him again. the other half of me told my new roommate i had just met the man i was gonna marry…

but he came back.

he said he had to go see about a girl.

i don’t usually go about making celebrity deaths personal {although i still can’t believe i live in a world where george harrison no longer walks the earth. i kinda feel like we should have all laid down and stopped breathing right along with him} but i think i really do owe my marriage, my babies and seven splendid years of partnership with my husband in part to robin williams. mike was inspired by this scene in goodwill hunting to take a chance and see about a girl.

and i was that girl.

 

on choosing and planning a homebirth

 photo F2AEEF49-7CC8-4EC8-BE92-B2305CEB52B1-2089-000000BD4107B83F_zps04d85281.jpg

 photo 276107D0-6F8F-4E22-91F7-09E6B8815ACF-2089-000000BD35C307B9_zpsfa78d43a.jpg

i’ve started this post over several times. i keep changing my mind about what i want to say about this life experience.

and i look up at these pictures above and i’m reminded why a home birth was the right choice for us, for this birth:

family.

family-centered care.

what i want to say is that after this experience i feel how much home birth needs to be a viable option for families.

and i don’t want to argue about safety or statistics.  really, i think that’s all bullshit. BIG BULLSHIT. the way i see it, someone figured out long ago that if they kept us fighting about which way of birthing is “safest” then no real work would have to be done to make ALL types of birth safer for mothers and babies.

because as it stands, ALL types of birth in this country, and this world, could be made safer.

there is no right way to do this across the board. these decisions to birth are highly personal. it’s one of the reasons i do the work i do; to help parents achieve the births they desire for their experience and their family.

and now my simple wish is that the only standard across the board was the level of love and care i’ve received during this birth was available and experienced by all. and i don’t believe it has to be achieved only through home birth. i think it can be done through all types of birth. and i see glimmers of hope out there that maybe we’ll get there someday. but, yes, i believe home birth is part of that puzzle for piecing back together our maternal care system as a country.

because y’all, the gift my family has been given from this life experience is astounding. i’m forever changed from this. and i hope it will carry forth with me for all my years, taking the shape of more generous love and kindness for growing families.

please, universe, let me remember this for all of my days.

i look up at these pictures darla helped me draw a day before daphne entered our world and i’m thankful for the opportunity to include my daughter in the birth of her sister in the capacity that we were able to because of midwifery care and home birth. darla sometimes seems like more than a daughter to me. she’s my friend and a partner in some senses and she certainly was for this birth. although there were times that having her with me at appointments was a headache and i swear to the cosmos that she adds about 10 points to my blood pressure reading, i can’t imagine having done this without the high level of involvement on her part.

darla dictated to me how the birth would go down for these drawings: the baby would be born in the birth pool so baby and i would be in there and she and mike would be looking on from either side. she gave mike his correct facial hair and asked if i would help her draw “wild curly hair” on her because she “will probably have to be woken up because the baby will come during the night.”

she was wrong about the birth pool but she was oh-so-right about the wild curly hair. she wasn’t present during the actual birthing. she slept through it somehow but was woken up once daphne finally let out her first real lusty cries about 3 hours later. she ran into the room sleepy-eyed in a whirl of wild and curly golden hair, shyly beaming around the room at the arrival of her sibling.

it was the sweetest moment of my life thus far.

and i realized later that it was that moment that i was looking for from this birth experience. the moment when my oldest baby met my youngest baby in a hazy, golden glow. that moment that was of her choosing, in her own space, in her own skin {literally. she must have unclothed at some point in the night so she and her sister were in naught but their birthday suits upon their first meeting} free from hospital distractions and unfamiliar faces. it was THAT moment i was searching for and didn’t know it until it happened. that moment has planted itself within me and taken deep root. and it wouldn’t have been possible in any other setting than in our own home. and for that i am so grateful. i can’t find any other word for it other than gratitude.

and my husbeau. oh my sweet, beardy husbeau.

i told him i thought i might go into labor later and then he put on bob segar. and then i had my doubts about whether he’d be able to adequately support me through this because…bob segar.

but once my labor really kicked in he knew exactly what to do. he revealed to me later that he didn’t feel like he knew what to do but to me it appeared that he did. he was there with me when i needed him and gave me space when i didn’t. he was my grounding. during the moments that i thought labor was going to carry me away i would look over at him and it would bring me all back to center.

he was able to take care of me in a way that i don’t think would be possible for him in an unfamiliar setting. and he’s taken such good care of us these past few days in our own space. did you know he could make banana pancakes with peanut butter chips? he can. he’s been holding out on me all this time.

but that’s getting into the postpartum period which i wrote a little bit about already and plan on posting more about later…

so, yeah, home birth. this birth was all that i could have hoped for and more. it was the most amazing and wonderful thing that i hope NEVER happens to me again.

well, maybe not never ever again… ;-)

p.s. thanks for reading! please remember that i’m not trying to promote any one method of birthing. i’m only trying to relay my gratitude for this life experience. above all else, i believe in families choosing the way to birth their babies that seems right individually.  for us, for this birth, a birth at home was the absolute right choice.

now go forth and be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid.

I’m a magician

Because I turned this

last maternity photo

into this….

dap jo

 

Daphne Josephine is now a member of the Wrucker crew, living on the outside of my body and looking pretty cute while doing so.

we’re healthy, happy and well-cared for. i’m now enjoying all the baby snuggles and fun time after pains, along with those lovely, humbling things like starting a new breastfeeding relationship and relearning how to pass a newborn back and forth. sheesh.

life is a trip, man.

{ps. glad i had the where-with-all to snap one last maternity shot at the beginning of my labor, before things really took off}

weekending

this weekend i got out walked quite a bit as i had hoped. it felt good. as i walked i said a mantra to myself: “my body is strong. my baby is strong.” i must have said it over 100 times to myself this weekend.

on my final walk of the weekend on sunday a deer came into my path, as deer sometimes do, and that deer told me i would be having my baby last night.

well…

that deer was a gawd-damned liar.

i kid. i did see a dear deer and stopped to watch it forage for a while but it didn’t tell me anything. i internalized it as a sign that i would be meeting this person soon though. that all was as it should be.

and i made another decision this weekend. i know i said that bump day was officially put to rest but i’ve changed my mind. in celebration of these extra days i’ve had with this little one i’m declaring everyday bump day! yay! the internet needs to see more of my fleshy mid-region!!!!  see down there.

but i’ve decided i’m going to enjoy these days. and i’m going to document them. because i will most likely never experience pregnancy again and i need to bask in the generosity of these extra days.

i’m glad the universe held out for me until i came around to see that.

 photo 52DB9D91-FE46-4EE3-A3A7-74F4CEC102CD-20543-0000083BC71FA378_zps60fc1d78.jpg

 photo 845584E5-AA81-4421-ADC0-8634B0D4A670-20543-0000083BCD57819C_zps79b5a326.jpg

 photo 04557386-2A7D-4E72-8E98-882A6AB4321A-20543-0000083BBB5A0E11_zps6edc81e4.jpg