At 17 days old, our friends hosted a 'Sweet 17' birthday party for Allison. Paul and Eleanor, Linda, Rorie, Marty, Shoe, George and his mom, G's parents were all there. Allison slept through the whole thing!
It was so special, though, with a lot of love floating around for Allison to soak up.
We are blessed with very wonderful friends and family. They all made our wedding special and now they are making our baby's arrival so special.
Whenever I have to leave Allison and do something in the house, I feel especially guilty, helpless and unsure of my decisions about using my time. How can this be so? It's like I'm forgetting something...like loving her.
But overall I think I know Allison is OK. She is surrounded by love from everywhere she looks.
What a lucky baby. What lucky parents.
Thank you, God.
It's timeless. All of it. I guess it was made to be that way so that we can help each other remember the magic and the madness of having our children.
I was cleaning out the barn yesterday and found my precious journal from pregnancy and then the birth of my first baby. I'd love to share my own journey with you. I was 21 years old when we found out we were (oops!) pregnant. My husband was 24. We were hippies living in a barn in New Hampshire sans electric and plumbing, bathing in the rock quarry up the hill from the barn...when it was convenient! I worked as a nanny for a newborn and a toddler (great training for the next 19 years of my life!!!) and G worked as a groundskeeper. We spent our time until our surprise pregnancy hiking, biking, skiing, gardening, listening to and playing music, doing Yoga and dancing 3 times a week.
October 9, 1982
It's magical being pregnant. The first day I was morning sick (last week) I was so excited to be sick that I didn't feel so bad.
Consecutive days, of course, were less and less exciting but still amazing because of what's going on in my body...I'm growing a person!!
My bra size went up 2 sizes in one month! Whenever I go somewhere I feel like everyone's staring at my chest. I'm sure it's just my own self consciousness, but still...
Everything seems to be changing everywhere I look. This baby inside me has already set our lives on a different road and we haven't even met him/her yet. I can't wait to meet my baby.
I quit my job today as a nanny. G is in Boston finding out if we can live there. If not I don't know what we'll do. But I guess I just can't imagine it NOT working out.
We moved to Boston, hired a midwife at a birth center, as we lived with my in-laws and as a result couldn't consider homebirth. Trudy Cox and Winnie Thomas of Cambridge Nurse-Midwives Associates.
From my journal:
June 30, 1982
Allison Kelly Bramhall was born on May 28 at 2:04 pm. It was a Friday. She arrived after almost 2 days of labor and a cesarean birth. My midwife and my husband were both there through the entire, amazing, creative, delightful thing. I LOVE labor and birth! I’m even ok with my cesarean...because I was loved through it all. My midwives never left their space of believing in me...of believing me.
Allison is beautiful with big expressive and inquisitive eyes, a rosy complexion and a very agreeable, loveable way.
She's been smiling since the day she was born and that just sums up her disposition. She sleeps for a good chunk of time at night and doesn’t wake up crying…just ‘ooches’ awake, which is so pleasant. It makes me not mind night feedings most of the time.
I love being a mamma, although it’s made me think I have to be more organized once things settle down! Nothing really seems to get done.
G. is a wonderful father. He reads Allison gardening books and the sports page and goofy things like that and she just lays in his arms and listens to his voice and looks at him with those eyes of hers.
When she was born, the nurse handed Allison right to G. For the next 2 days every time the 3 of us were together alone, G. would cry at a looking at her.
When she was born the 2 of them bonded instantly and fell in love.
Allison weighed 8 pounds, 2 ounces when she was born. At four weeks old, she weighs 9 pounds, 13 ounces. Obviously breastfeeding is going very well!
Katherine works as a homebirth midwife and
Gentle Landing Midwifery
"I've never known someone so briefly and loved so deeply as you. Ever. Thank you for your lovely card for Grace's birthday. She holds the little heart in her still-chubby hands and just stares. I will always, in all ways, be thankful that your hands gave her to me." -L.