Two years of planning have come to fruition in the form of a lovely baby girl. During the long nights, when she screams from gas or gnaws my nipple, when the diapers have overflowed or my shirt is soaked, again, with a kind thought, when I’m sticky and disheveled but she will not sleep so I can take a shower – at those times, I try to recall the anticipation.
It worked the first time we tried, after nine years of trying not to. The decision itself was scary enough, now it was actually happening. I remember her moving for the first time, the butterfly flutter. Her later movements were more curious; was that an arm or a leg? Which way is her head pointing? Are those kicks or hiccups? Her gender was a mystery, as was the molding of her face, a mixture of Sean and my features. Would the baby be healthy? What should we name him or her? Are we ready, have we done all we can?
Now I watch her sleep in fascination. Her snores and sleep murmurs I follow in rapt attention. She’s breathing. She’s beautiful. I got to take her home, and now I get to take her anywhere. Everywhere. She rests in my arms as if it were heaven, and in a way I suppose it is. Five weeks since her birth, and it will always feel like yesterday.