5 am mornings

Dear baby,

You’re fretting in my placenta today, waking mummy up with a rather alarming heartburn then leg cramp. Daddy woke up too, hearing mummy’s sudden change in breathing (or chugging like a freight train to breathe through the cramp).

It’s 5 am, and mummy is wide awake and staring at the ceiling fan, cuddling pepper. She is also annoyed because she was sound asleep until the chugging.

I hope the dogs like you, darling, and vice versa. It would break my heart if you guys didn’t get along.

B is for Baby

For a long time, I struggled over whether to write about my pregnancy. It has been both the most intimate and private experience I’ve had. But as people start talking to me about why I am not writing about it, I realise when I revisit the topic of “why I write”, my intention was always to be true to myself and to leave something my daughter will read one day, so she, when she goes through the same things one day, will be able to talk to me about it directly. And in the event she can’t, it’s right here.

For the most part of my first trimester, I struggled with an insane self-absorbtion. I never thought of being without children as a freedom, all these 28 years– but suddenly, when the strip turned pink– the reality of what it means to be with child hit me like a ton of bricks. There goes your privacy. There goes your ability to pack up and leave for an impromptu trip. There goes hedonistic nights of binge drinking, smoking shishas and doing whatever the hell we want. Denn and I both have high pressure jobs, and often we rake up such a high sleep debt that we plan offline, downtime to sleep. Denn and I are friends, before we are spouses, and to be honest, I love the nights of staying up, engaged in rapid fire discussions about anything under the sun. Who cares what time it goes on to, who cares what time we wake the next day.

We have been preparing for a child for a while now. I can never understand when people ask “is the pregnancy planned?” — well I think any two people who choose to have unprotected unions cannot claim it is not planned. We have been leaving it to God’s timing, really. But preparing and wanting a child is totally different from finding out you have a real living being living in you.
I think the first 3 weeks went by in a haze of tears and panic, and just coming to terms with being pregnant. It was too early to even see the gynae. Just the unbearable pressure of your life changing and moving in a direction you are not entirely prepared for.

But they say time settles everything, and the initial panic fades, the awful nausea passed.  it took a while to get here, but here we are. 20 weeks in. We are doing ok. All 3 of us.

Elizabeth, you are much loved and wanted. We can’t wait to see you.

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J is for jealous

Today I remember a particularly toxic period in a relationship I was in, with screaming and crying and jealous calls and messages, and checking up on him all the time. Where he was who he was with.. checking his phone for messages, spending entire weekends with him to be sure of his movements.

Thank god for Denn, and his loving consistency and for never ever putting me through any of this roller coaster.

E is for ebb

Ebb and flow. Rise and fall. Ups and downs. Joys and tears.

I think today, today I fell a little lower than expected, lower than I have in years.

Sitting here in my silent room, trying to psyche myself up that tomorrow will only be better.

Thank you w, for being there through it all, and for understanding without judgement. Wwwd.

Denn, prouder of you that I ever was. Thank you for being my hope.

2 years!

on the event of our two year wedding anniversary, these are the words i say to you.

two years ago, i married my best friend.
now, two years on, i realise, nothing has changed, and for that this morning i am grateful.

we’d never know what lies around the bend, beloved, and i guess that is the truest way to feel alive, our reactions, our compromises, our decisions, our coping mechanisms. thank you for giving me such a safe environment, so steeped and secured in your love, for me to be able to acknowledge my emotions, at their rawest, most immediate, pre-censorship state.

this will be a tough year for the both of us, with you going off for 6 months and me not able to join you there. i think we are just a couple of weeks to your departure; and that reality grows starker and starker with each day you pander to my every whim around bedtime when i am fussing and stressing (or decompressing) from the day.

so here is my blessing for you:

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.