A Good Home
My arms are fully extended, straining to reach the keyboard on my laptop. My ample 42-week (or 43-week, depending on which estimated due date you go by) pregnant abdomen has become the focal point of our lives this past month. On a physical level, it’s been a month of strong contractions (prompting several “false alarms”), shooting pains, aches and sleepless nights. It’s also been a month of feeling our daughter kick harder and stronger than ever, responding to our voices and our touch— which makes her parents both proud and relieved on a daily basis. On an emotional level, it’s been a month of mood swings, anxiety, and confusion.
It’s been a month of doubting my body one moment and having the utmost confidence in its abilities the next. There have been difficult decisions, hours spent weighing risks and benefits. I’ve had to redefine what this birth could actually look like, which at times has felt like a process of giving things up. It’s been a month of fears— some of them unfounded, but no less real.
During this transformational time, I’ve also experienced incredible support from friends and family. Words have been spoken that I will cherish for the rest of my life. Last night, slumped down on the couch, head and body aching, I turned to Michael and said “Well, at least we know we’ll have this kid by Friday. I’m nervous, though. I never thought I’d have to be induced. I’ve been so committed to the idea of a natural birth, knowing its the best thing for both the baby and me; I’ve prepared for it for nearly 10 months.”
He offered his usual encouraging words, assuring me that I’d done everything right, that we’d researched every option, that we had amazing medical care and doula support. He grabbed my hand and I turned to find two wet eyes staring into mine. “Thank you for providing such a good home for our daughter for so long. Such a good home.”