19 January 2018

week's end.

a bit of everything and nothing is on my list.

i want to welcome husband home with a cocktail. i want to spend time with baby's journal. i want to make a big breakfast. i want to move my body and walk a long way. i want to write a letter. i want to mail it with a pretty stamp. i want to notice, really notice, the delicious slices of winter light as they meet our windows and walls. i want to go somewhere in the city i have never been. i want to lay my eyes on something i have never seen. i want to live hours slowly, doing only what needs to be done, knowing no moment other than the one i am in.

16 January 2018

our winter.

this growing season is tender, holy, stunningly fleeting, heartbreakingly sweet. i feel everything. i notice everything. i appreciate everything. i move differently. i hear my thoughts differently. i sleep deeper. i eat with gratitude. i admire my body. i see others through softer eyes. i study mothers with wonder and understanding. i buy dresses with you in mind — thoughts of my nursling held close, visions of your chubby toddler hands tangled in the hem. i cradle tiny knit booties and ask aloud, will you love to wear these on our winter walks?

i sip red raspberry tea. i rub butters on my belly. i read woolf and frost and eliot and stevens. i play bob dylan and mozart's violin concertos and bach's cello suites. in response, you move in me with such spirit and life. even now, tucked and folded as you are in these late days, you kick like a rabbit, rapid and strong.

i gather blankets and kimonos to wrap you in. i cannot believe your body will be, for a time, so small.

i consider my hospital bag, knowing what i slip inside will be your first sight and smell of me, whether or not you remember. (i will remember.)

i try and try to imagine your journey to earth and i am undone by the moment i look at you and you look back at me. (i will always be undone.)

i yearn to carry you in my arms; i already miss the way i carry you now.

for every odd comment from a stranger on the street, there are handfuls of sunshine tossed at my feet (the twinkle in older women's eyes when they notice my full moon of a belly, heartsprung wishes given voice: have a happy baby, god bless your baby, oh this is wonderful).

i feel my love for your papa deepen, somehow. i loved him before, so entirely, but i watch him now, falling in love with his fatherhood, with you, and my adoration adds and adds. i see him as the man who gives me everything, everything. life, love, happiness, our babies, a soft place to land, a home. a home i am happy to bring you up in.

these weeks, i rise early — or late, depending on how one thinks of it — and rock with you in our chair, our windows awash in moonshine. i am tugged from bed as though by a cord from within. i am grateful for the intimacy of these (infinite, numbered, precious) hours with you. i am already learning how to be your mother.

i have never felt so close to heaven, so held in the very palm of god.

15 January 2018

in the truest of ways.

your papa made this weekend one for mama. a massage (the note was tucked in my stocking on christmas morning), a haircut, a chocolate milkshake when it was laughably cold out but it sounded like just the thing. he assembled your stroller and he made french toast and he made a pot of soup and he made space for time — time for me to write (to you, for me, about it all), time for me to walk (anywhere and nowhere in particular), time for me to gather (necessaries for our hospital bag, pretties to wear in our earliest days together). together we changed our bed linens and chose a bouquet of roses to scatter on our nightstand and about rooms.

and i thought of how his love will ripple through me, within you, across your childhood, and into eternity, for this is a man who knows what it is to love marrow deep and entirely, through hours and days, over and over and over again, until a lifetime has gone by.

10 January 2018

a party for baby.

glimpses into one saturday past, when we were showered with such love — such generosity – such support, and by so many, gathered from all over. your grandma and aunties laura, angie, amanda, and ali worked together across months and time zones to make it all really beautiful, to make it all sing of us. 

i love, i so deeply appreciate: the theme, you shall see wonders (and, oh, my dove, you shall) — the flowers (cream roses, my favorite, the ones i carried the day i married your papa) — the treats (quiche and cookies and baked french toast, made by hands that love us so) — the books (your darling library is growing and growing) — the gifts (we have a stroller for you now) — the miles traveled (over rivers and mountains and continents) — the treasures passed on by your grandma (your papa's own baby clothes) — the love shown to me by your aunt laura (all the delicate necessaries for a new mama). 

and something else: i love that this gathering so meaningfully — yet so unintentionally — paralleled our shower given in south carolina by your pippi and aunties amber and megan. our people know us, and you'll learn, my dove, that to feel known in this life is an inestimable buoy. maybe nothing is better. 

(how loved, how anticipated, how wanted you are. how much joy you already bring.)

08 January 2018

big snow, some days ago now.

i've never known a snowier winter than this, the one i have carried you inside, and it's early january, and only barely. we've moons and miles yet to go. 

i tell your papa that you make the snow and he smiles with his whole body and i honest to goodness believe that you do. that's how i see you: blowing kisses of snowflakes down to us, straight from the hand of god. you are my winter, all of my winters, from here on out. 

03 January 2018

driving north on a frosty day / the everything, the all.

two days after christmas, we hopped in the car with my dad and christy and drove north to hudson, a dreamboat of a town perched two hours up the river from new york city. it was a day for window shopping and gallery hopping, sipping bottomless coffee and poking our way through dusty antiques. we hoped to find benches for our farm table, but found mozart's violin concerto in d on vinyl instead. we lunched at mexican radio and warmed our frosty fingers with toddies at the governor's tavern before the drive home, marveling all the while at hudson's good bones — queen anne mansions, stained glass windows, victorian turrets, a patchwork of paint colors, patterned shingles, overhanging eaves — and how lively the streets must be in summer. no doubt, it's a place to come back to. 


and something no photograph could ever manage to capture: they drove from south carolina to new york on a tuesday, so that i can rock my baby in my grandmother's rocking chair, the very one i was rocked in thirty years ago. they came bearing coffee beans and homemade butter cookies, a lamp for our loft and a sweater for baby the color of toffee with small wooden buttons.

it's a staggering love, the love of parents. the giving of selves so purely, so entirely, over and over and over.

i want my motherhood to be a testament of my love. i want my children to know i belong to them. i need them to see me see them. even now, i rock this baby in the dark of night — our floorboards alight with starshine, in this chair that's traveled one thousand miles, where we'll learn to nurse and learn each other — whispering, we will do the same for you.