Wednesday, July 13, 2016

My baby could come any day now, and I have to say that I'm really really scared. For the past couple weeks, I've been almost purely excited. I've wondered what this little one will look like. I've thought of the joy that will come from the snuggles and giggles, and getting to repeat early childhood with a brand-new person.

But tonight, I'm weeping because I'm also scared and sad. I think now of the time I linger with my big boys while putting them to bed, repeating songs my youngest likes, trying to chat with my middle about what he's reading. It's already getting tougher to have good conversations with my two adolescents. My son is reluctant to talk at all (is he walling up his heart from the tension in our home?) and my daughter is increasingly independent and aloof. I dread what a new baby will add to the mix. How many times will I be pulled away prematurely because of a crying infant? How hard will it be to have heartfelt conversations? How many nights will I be so tired I can't even manage to sing with my boys? How will the other kids feel when they see me with the new baby? Jealous? Neglected? And rightfully so?

I want to still do the same activities with my older kids that I do now, even with a baby in the mix. But I know it won't be the same. I know there will be good, but there will also be bad, and yes, ugly. I'm already an emotional mess; I can't imagine what I'll be like postpartum and exhausted.

So I cry myself to sleep tonight, knowing my days are numbered. In just eighty hours, the boys will be off to camp for a week, and they return home a week before the due date. Will the baby be here by then? Is this the end of our family of five as we've known it for nine years?

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