Dear New Baby,
This is your first monthly letter of what will hopefully be thousands. Because I intend to live to be 99 years old just so I get the pleasure of whining about how no one will charge the batteries of my Rascall Scooter for me and now I've been stuck in the casino for four days with no change of Depends.
I've decided to start writing these letters to you now, because they say that you're never as good with the second baby. That with the first one, you take thousands of pictures, which is very true for your big brother. The first weeks for his life, there were weeks where I had to create multiple Snapfish albums, because I had taken hundreds of pictures of him and none of them were considered bad by my sleep-deprived hormonal brain, so that family (luckily I was never psycho enough to send these albums to friends and acquaintances) were forced to go through 300 digital pictures of a newborn. All of which looked identical, except for the slight differentiations in levels of spit up on the onesie he was wearing.
I think we have relatives who still haven't been heard from 2.5 years later, because their computers are still on strike from the sheer volume of pictures of the blob with a comb over that he was at the time.
So I write this newsletter to you before you're even born (hell, per Babycenter, you still have a tail, which I hope you're really, really working on getting rid of, because tail removal? It ain't cheap if you're not of the dog family), because I didn't do so for your brother and that way, when you whine to me about having to wear your brother's hand-me-downs again or playing with toys that were broken from him hauling them from the loft area to the tile in the entry way, I can say "yeah, but he doesn't have letters from me saying all the embarrassing things you've put my body through."
See? You've won already! Also? I'm already earmarking extra therapy money to make up for these extra seven newsletters. I'm a good mom like that.
It might seem strange to write about someone I've never met. Although, I've already decided that you? You're going to be my trouble maker. I know it in every cell of my body.
Your brother is for the most part laid back. He was a fairly easy baby, except for that non-sleeping thing, which at the time made him seem like the devil reincarnate to me, but I can look back objectively now and see that really, he was a pretty great baby and that he's a pretty damn easy toddler, as his time in time alone is proportionately as small as the time I've spent wishing I was drunk in order to make it through the toddler years.
But you? I have this nagging feeling that you're not going to be so easy.
I thought you would be, until this week.
My pregnancy with your brother was the easiest thing ever. Sure, I was tired those first few months, and your father can show you the scars where I savagely attacked him that one time he got between me and a container of sour cream, but other than that, I was just my normal happy healthy self. No morning sickness, no issues whatsoever, life was grand and I swore that if I could, I'd spend the rest of my life pregnant.
The first couple of weeks with you were the same way.
And then this week, I had to pick up your brother from school early. I figured I'd do some work from home, but by the time I made it home, I was so nauseous and exhausted that I crawled into my bed with him and threw the remote and a bunch of candy at him and told him to entertain himself.
I came to an hour later and had to run to the bathroom to hurl every item of food I'd eaten for the past three years.
All this time, as I'm struggling to breathe in between waves of vomit, your brother is yelling at me from the bed "Mama, are you going potty?"
I tell you that you're going to be trouble, because you made me throw up the most glorious lunch of my favorite 10-dollar hamburger, from the custom burger joint. My burger, designed by me has goat cheese spread on it, avocado, black bean and corn salsa, fried onion strings and tomatoes on it, with garlic aioli sauce. What is not to love, you half-inch long ingrate?
Since I can't put you in time alone yet, I'm totally taking that 10 bucks out of your allowance.
Don't tell your dad, but I've already got your name picked out. I used to think you were a boy, when you were first behaving like your brother. Now? I'm thinking you're a girl, the kind of girl who won't take any shit and will beat up her big brother just because he looked at her funny.
The kind of girl that I've always wanted to be and sometimes pretend I am.
In the end, it doesn't matter to me what you are or what your quirks are, as long as you learn to appreciate the art that is my favorite 10-dollar burger.
And that you are healthy, of course.
I have yearned for you for what seems like a long time. I never imagined that there would be a three-year gap between you and your brother.
Maybe I'd taken things for granted and this is the universe's way to remind me that I can't always get my way. Either way, I'm humbled that you've decided to come into my life.
When I lay on my death bed (at 99), one of my favorite memories ever will be the day I found out I was pregnant with you. It was the kind of moment that shakes you to your core and makes you believe in fate and in something bigger than you are.
In some ways, I guess that's what every parent wants for their child: to be bigger than them are and to make an impact on this sometimes tough world.
Welcome to our life, kid. I can't promise you perfection. But I can promise you that you will be loved as much as your brother and cheered on as much as he is and I will fill as many memory cards with your face as you let me.
Thank you for choosing me to be your Maman.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Dear New Baby,