Tuesday, January 2, 2018

the final four

I feel fine anytime she's around me now. 
And she's around me now, almost all the time.
If I'm well, you can tell that she's been with me, now. 
And she's been with me now, quite a long, long, time. 
Yes and I feel fine.
Something in the Way She Moves - James Taylor

Our fourth (and final) family member, Edith Wildes Fletcher joined us on September 9th. E and I spent the better part of 2016 debating about having a second child. After 2.5 years with Sam, our lives had finally fallen into a solid routine that seemed so normal. Perhaps it was because we enjoyed Sam so much, that we didn't really feel the need for another addition. But then again, for the same reason, we thought adding to the family would be fun. A decision was made for us rather quickly, which was excellent because honestly, there was a window of time I was going to commit to for this to happen. I spent all of 2017 pregnant, managing gestational diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and of course, a toddler. It didn't take long to dawn on me that pregnancy the second time around totally loses its luster. But, once again my body grew a healthy baby and I'm incredibly lucky for that.

I was so very nervous about many things during the almost 10 months of pregnancy. I was nervous to have a girl as mother-daughter relationships can be...complicated. Of course, they can be so amazing as well. I'd also grown accustomed to raising, playing with and talking to a boy, that I was (ironically) unsure how I'd handle that with a girl. Mostly I was nervous of "losing" Sam. He was my first. My baby. My buddy. I knew the time a newborn took. The energy, both physically and mentally. Did I have all that in me? Could I give him the same attention at a time when he surely would notice if I slacked. And while I knew that double the kids also meant double the fun, I was still wary of my ability to love another in the same manner that I did Sam - although everyone told me I could and would. Of course I was excited too. My shoulders felt lighter knowing our family would be complete. I could finally take the idea of another child off the table.

Nerves aside, I soaked up the spring and especially summer pal-ing around with my first born. Picking him up despite the size of my belly, playing rescue missions with him and showing him as much as I could of the days before I would inevitably disappear. I hugged him a little harder. Kissed him a little more. Read him a few extra books and fell asleep with him many nights. I seemed to be breaking all the rules we'd put in place over the last 3 years, in fear I'd never get these times back.

September finally arrived and the first of many transitions for Sam began - starting a new school. I was able to get him through a few days of the new preschool before I went into labor. Having everything in place at home felt weird. Almost every piece of laundry was done, dishes were washed and toys were put up. We were ready and waiting. I sped up the process with a little help from my doc, but Edie took over after that, giving me a quick (but super-intense) labor. My sister arrived in time to help me and E welcome our second, in the same hospital we'd welcomed our first, at 2am to the soundtrack of The Bee Gees' Night Fever.

Edie was born with her deep dark eyes wide open. She cried for only a second, before they placed her on my chest. She instantly looked at me, grabbed my pinky and latched with no problem. Immediately I feel so deeply in love with this little girl. The days at the hospital were easy. I knew what to expect this time around, I utilized the nursery to get some sleep and I stayed in the bed a lot more to let my body recover from birth. I found myself excited to see her rolled in for a feeding. This time, my role as mother was solidified. I knew it was my job and I found no confusion or anxiety on what that title entailed.

The next few weeks were clouded by the normal newborn...newness (for lack of a better word). My mom and dad helped me ease Edie into the world as we know it, making her comfy when we could, teaching her to sleep and keeping her well-fed. And while there were many nights that seemed to roll into the mornings, it all flew by so very fast. But she caught on to all the things so easily. I find myself back at work today, wondering how it's already done.

In 2018 I hope to find a way to better balance two kids, knowing it will always look different and most likely never be equal. I want to reconnect with Sam in his new role and new age. I want to watch Edie grow and flourish as she adapts to life and I want to continue to put my family first. Most of all, I want to take in all the blessings and successes I have right in front of me, and relish in those before they slip right by.

But I chose to dance across the stages of the world.
Everyone said I'd never learn.
And I still hear your words:
"I waited all my life for you...sweet girl."
Sweet Girl - Fleetwood Mac

Thursday, March 31, 2016

waiting for the funeral


At every occasion I'll be ready for the funeral
At every occasion, once more, it's called the funeral
At every occasion, oh, I'm ready for the funeral
At every occasion, oh, one billion day funeral

 - the funeral, band of horses


for e's birthday this year i surprised him with the first two BOH albums. everything all the time was an album that was on repeat not long after we started dating. i love it from beginning to end. listening to the funeral last week as the album played struck a new chord with me. 

it's been two years since my sweet gram left. i guess there's some part of me that's waiting for that funeral i didn't get to attend. some part of me that is still practicing that goodbye, that i never got to say. 

i miss her everyday.


Thursday, January 7, 2016

lose some to win some.

Sometimes fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn again, but the storm adjusts. Over and over you play this out, like some ominous dance with death just before dawn. Why? Because this storm isn’t something that blew in from far away, something that has nothing to do with you. This storm is you. Something inside of you. So all you can do is give in to it, step right inside the storm, closing your eyes and plugging up your ears so the sand doesn’t get in, and walk through it, step by step. There’s no sun there, no moon, no direction, no sense of time. Just fine white sand swirling up into the sky like pulverized bones. That’s the kind of sandstorm you need to imagine.

And you really will have to make it through that violent, metaphysical, symbolic storm. No matter how metaphysical or symbolic it might be, make no mistake about it: it will cut through flesh like a thousand razor blades. People will bleed there, and you will bleed too. Hot, red blood. You’ll catch that blood in your hands, your own blood and the blood of others.
And once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.

– Haruki Murakami, Kafka On The Shore
2015 was a shitstorm. i mean a snowstorm. i mean a sandstorm...

if 2014 was my year of disruption, 2015 was the year of rebuilding and rebirth. i set out to redefine who i was, knowing there was plenty of the "old" kbf left inside and trying to find how it could co-exist with the "new" kbf that was undeniably dominant. there's not much else i can say about it that i haven't said here before. there were good times. and bad times. and happy times. and sad times. but man-oh-man it was all so beautiful. there were moments i'd like to write off, but never would because... c'est la vie. and in the end, i gained so much more than i lost.

adios 2015. you were a whirlwind of wonder and realization that left me stronger, sweeter, smarter and softer. on to the next frontier. and no matter how this year may have left me weathered, i can't help but repeat my tradition of welcoming the new year - and all that it brings - with arms wide open. 

happy new year to you + yours.

Monday, November 9, 2015

daylight fading.

fall has settled into new england quite nicely over the last few weeks. it's my EIGHTH fall up here and each year i'm always in such awe of the beauty. this is still my favorite thing about living in the north east and, regardless of the fact it means #winteriscoming, fall remains my favorite so i never cease to to submerge myself in the season.  

taking advantage of daylight hours is key this time of year, so sam and i kicked off the weekend leaf-peeping and walking some sunny paths. the kid is obsessed with leaf piles at the moment, running unprompted into the massive mounds. its makes my heart swell with joy for so many reasons, mostly because i see that he too has found his own love for what autumn brings - even if he doesn't fully know it yet.