Today I got a phone call from a friend I don't know too well yet. We were in the middle of another slightly stressful smallchild day. Grace has developed extreme separation anxiety, making visiting gym & creche stressful for us both. As the only child there, she had the full attention of two very lovely childcare workers. However once she had eaten the nice bits of her lunch, I had to be summoned from the gym for cuddles & reassurance. Apparently, if I go regularly, she will adjust, it's only for an hour & ten minutes, but oh my oh my her distress, my distress. Anyway, I had just finished lunch & was consulting my favorite toddler book, Robin Barker's The Mighty Toddler for reassurance that I wasn't being a horrible mother, & the phone rang.
I had planned to ring this friend today as I thought she would having her baby soon, & might be finding that last bit of waiting difficult. R is the only person I know who has a worse obstetric past than I do & it's something we have bonded over. She's been trying to have another baby for quite a while & I understand the obsession & the way it can twist your head. Anyway, she rang to say she had had her little girl on Saturday morning, a bit earlier than expected but the doctors weren't leaving anything to chance. R shared the story of her daughters' birth & it was good to hear. Mum, bub & dad are all well & back home together. The news has made me so happy I feel like crying.
We are going to visit next week, so I'll have to hurry up & make a gift. I've been tossing some ideas around in my head for the last week or so, thinking that I had until mid May. I remember when Grace was born how touched & surprised I was with the gifts & cards. They came from every corner of our life. Even from friends of my parents. I think because Grace was the result of my seventh pregnancy & because we lost our son at 20 weeks, that people especially wanted to share our joy. Maybe it's always like this when a babe is born, and maybe I just didn't really get it until Grace arrived.
Grace & I spent the late afternoon in the garden. I turned the soil in bed number 1, mulched, limed & organic fertilised. Planted seeds of spinach, broad beans, coriander & snowpeas; seedlings I raised of broccoli & lettuce. It felt so good to be out in the dark afternoon gloom, planting with my daughter. Even if she still likes to eat dirt & grass. It's such a good thing to share. Reflecting on R's news & the joyful happiness in her voice, I remembered those first weeks. Giving birth to Grace, although the pain was unspeakably shocking , was the highest, most ecstatic and awe inspiring moment of my life. As I got to know her, sometimes the passion & tenderness caused time to melt. Other times the tiredness, washing & inability to get anything done without major organisation seemed all to much. It was such a precious & intense time that seemed to go on forever. Then suddenly, it was Easter time and we were celebrating Graces' first birthday. Now that time seems like a distant country we visited all too briefly.
For R & her man, and the new little person they've made; Congratulations & lots of loving thoughts out over the ether.