Monday, 19 August 2013

Reflections On A Year

Yesterday our sweet LB turned one year old.

We had a party for her, complete with a towering birthday cake, friends and family, paper pom-poms, and a couple of parents who paused to look at each other at one point to exclaim, "That year went fast!"

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On Saturday night I was so excited about her birthday that I couldn't sleep, so I spent my time lying awake and thinking thoughts that went along the lines of, "This time last year I was..."

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At 7:30 a.m. on August 17th I woke up late for a doctor's appointment, used the toilet, and then thought, "Oh gross! What's happening?!"

(I encourage you all to read at least one page of a pregnancy book. Just skip all the sensational nonsense that your doctor will practically inform you of, if it's an issue, and go to the end where it says, "When your body is getting ready for labour, this might happen!"

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This time last year my water 'breaks' at Migros. We rush to hospital, hang out for a few hours, my doctor tells me, "That must have been the false water sack."

We leave hospital dejected.

My water truthfully BREAKS (gushes, explodes, no control over rushing water) at the bus stop a few feet outside hospital, and I scare a pack of teenagers into adolescent celibacy.  The mid-wives chortle in disbelief as I squish my way back to the delivery wing.

Dry clothes, Dan and I resume our Monopoly game on my phone, I start to hear women SCREAMING in pain all around me in the delivery ward.

I'm slightly scared.

Contractions surprise me with how painful they are. I have no breaks in between any of them. One ends, another begins. It ends. It begins. It ends. It begins. The CTG machine print-out is a series of peaks with no valleys.

I hobble into delivery room during a contraction, ask for an epidural, then throw-up.

Epidural is given at 11:00 p.m.,  I feel such relief that I fall asleep and don't wake up until 1:30 when I can feel that the baby is coming.

At 1:40 I start pushing and at 2:10 a.m. our world changes forever when our strong (early) girl enters the world crying the most beautiful cry I've ever heard.

***

 
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A few weeks old vs. One year old
 
This year has been every cliché one might imagine, except for the fact it wasn't. It was hard, it was easy, we laughed, there were tears, some days we felt weightless and other days we felt heavy. Some moments were scary and others were so unbelievably awesome I couldn't believe this got to be real life.
 
I've often felt overwhelmed when I've paused to look at LB, rolling, crawling, toddling, across the floor, and realised, "You are ours." Because, whoa! We have a daughter. A beautiful little soul who is every delight I knew existed, yet until meeting her didn't believe was actually possible.
 
She is possibility. In every connotation.
 
She was blessed by the butterflies, she was born when the stars were hanging in the sky and warm evening breezes were filling those gossamer delivery room curtains with air and pushing them up to the ceiling.
 
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Her party was a wonderful celebration, and yesterday night (when it ended) Dan and I high-fived each other for being proper adults. We hosted our baby's first birthday, we cleaned up the huge mess that resulted from it, we were tired and elated. So we popped the cork from the champagne bottle, collapsed on the couch, and toasted ourselves to a year well done.
 
To us, for rocking parenthood and partnership.
 
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Here are some shots of her party:
 
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Her epic three layer vanilla cake!
The design is via Sweetapolita, and the cake recipe is from the divine goddess Martha Stewart.
I baked the cake on Saturday night, got the layers filled and the crumb coating on, and Dan put his
bakery skills to work by getting the outside frosting ultra-smooth.
(Fun fact: Dan's parents owned a bakery, and he knows how to do stuff like bake bread and get icing really smooth.)
 
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Me explaining to LB that this is called a 'sugar-bomb' and even though she's never had sugar before, we think she'll like it.
(Also telling her to make a wish!)
 
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What is this strange confection?
 
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Hmm...I think I like...BOING, SUGAR RUSH!
 
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So I says to that baby, "Hey! Baby! Get your own toy car to play with! This green one is mine!
Those babies at playgroup be crazy! LOLZ!"
 
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Ah! Mother! Get that camera outta my face! I'm telling everyone a story about
playgroup! You're killing my buzz!
 
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We relied on the sugar rush to keep her awake past naptime, so she could function to open gifts.
 
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The queen of the bumblebees unwrapping her ride.
 
***
 
There's no other way to sum this up other than to say she is enchanting. She is more than words, just as this past year has been. It's been the best year of our lives. It's been so vibrant and at times so dark, but at all times she has been here, shining bright: the light we always saw in our future and wondered what it was.

3 comments:

Mom said...

What a beautiful blog Cait ! Love you all so much dad and mom xoxoxo

T said...

Happy 1 Year to all three of you! Love this post Caitie and love the pictures!

Ais said...

Aww, great post Cait! Sweet little Lill, already a year old. Hope she had lots of fun :) And great job on the cake Dan!!