|Day before Henry!|
Luckily for us, there is nothing in the world more beautiful than birth. Being witness to the first moments of a life, feeling as though the entire universe has expanded to accommodate this arrival, and the elation that follows is almost more than I can bear. Despite my best intentions to remain composed, the intensity of every emotion is just too overwhelming. I think my heart gets so full that it actually bottoms out, in a way. The flip side of feeling so blessed by such a beautiful gift is the potential to get tipped the other direction very easily. With this perfect, pure, tiny being comes a heavy feeling of responsibility...responsibility to do everything humanly possible to protect their well-being and provide the best life you're able to give. So, this time around my hang-up has been the idea of "home." I've been sad, and I mean SAD, about not having a "home" for our kids, and bringing a new baby "home" to our temporary set-up. I take it very personally and often feel it's a huge failure on our part that these circumstances have dragged on so long. Although rational Emily knows she's not personally responsible for factors outside her control, irrational and emotional Emily gets fixated on this notion quite often.
When we returned home from the hospital, I found a gift waiting for me. It was a framed, antique piece of poetry by Edgar H. Guest entitled "Home." As I sat and read the sentiment in the poem, tears were streaming down my face. The gift was from my old dance teacher, someone very dear to me, and the message was exactly what I needed. I practically grew up in her house, a second "home" from the time I was toddler (not even three!) until the day I graduated high school. It occurred to me that "home" is not necessarily about being in our specific house with all our things in order. The message of the poem points out that "home" is love and living and family...things I should be appreciating every day. Home is wherever Jason is, where our children are, and all the moments of our being together, not our street address.
|Ahmie and Pa with baby Henry|
|My grandparents with all SIX of their great-grandBOYS!!!!!! From left: Henry, Johnny, Benny (blue), Charlie (green), Ikey (orange), and William|
I'll go even further and remind myself that this small town community is also "home." It's the dance teacher who believes in you, the the old friend from high school who sends an email out of the blue that makes you think you might be good at something, the one that realizes you might need some alone time with your spouse and sends a gift certificate for dinner at his establishment, the one that calls when you need a friend the most, the one that always offers help whether it's dinner or diapers, the one that comes to your rescue by taking care of your children when you're in the hospital having ANOTHER baby, the old teachers, the parents of friends, the church you grew up in....the people who have your back. Honestly, what more do I want?? This morning I sat waist deep in a mess of toys that have no official "place," the baby strapped to me in his wrap, three stocky little toddlers clinging to my knees, and my "big" boy leaning in to snuggle his new brother, when I was struck by William's simple observation. Amidst his kisses for Henry and his arm hugging the other three closer, he said "Look Mama, we're a family." Good point. As it turns out, we are "home."
|Snug as a bug in a rug|
So, a few highlights from our first week. It took less than an hour before Henry endured an injury at the hands of his brother. He was laying on the ottoman for all to admire when Charlie reached out and clawed his face. Big gash across the forehead. Honestly, blood already??? I think my heart almost stopped watching it unfold. It was like a gang initiation...I guess he got "jumped" in or something. I felt like an awesome mom explaining what happened at his weight check.
|If you could just hold me like this all night long, that would be great!|
That's all for now. This post kind of got away from me and with two refusing an afternoon nap and one hungry newborn, I better go. Thanks for all the kind and congratulatory words...we are truly grateful.