Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Waiting

Found at joe-ks

A million times a day someone will ask me if I am ready to have this baby. And a million times a day I answer "no."

It's half true...mentally I am ready and excited to meet this baby, but I also can't breathe (not an exaggeration) when I think about parenting three little ones and my still long "to-do before the baby comes" list. Physically, I am dreading labor and yet look forward to it as a great adventure. I am in "pre-labor" most of the day these days, which means I am having painful contractions that are more than Braxton Hicks but less than full labor. I know this is my body doing some of the work ahead of time, and I know it's very common for moms who have been pregnant before, but the near-constant pain is incredibly draining. I panic every night because I think it might be the night, and then I wake up the next day disappointed that I'm still pregnant. I burst into tears over everything and I'm constantly snapping at people (no comments please Robbie). I feel like I need to hide under a porch and be alone like a ferrel cat about to give birth.

In short, I am a mess.

I remember hating this waiting time period with both boys, but I forgot just how MUCH I hated it.

This is a time when I am eternally grateful for my intuitive female friends. Yesterday morning, after a particularly rough night, a couple friends had me over for coffee and an impromptu baby shower. They gave me little pink clothes and cards full of baby faces and let me talk (bitch) about my anxiety.

Today, a different friend sent me a poem, which of course made me cry. And it forced me to slow down and refocus on the actual living baby I'm growing - instead of all the hoopla and logistics of bringing her into the world. Here are the first few lines of the poem that have been reverberating in my head all day:

These Last Few Hours
It is important to me that I spend a part of the next few hours here alone with you in the darkness.
You and I will never be this close again.
By morning you will be a tiny person all your own. No longer the kicking, demanding bulge in my body that I have grown to love so well.

- Dee Dee McCall

Tomorrow (technically today since it's 2am) yet another set of friends is throwing us a painting party to help finish the hall painting project that looms large on our list. It's funny how different the "baby showers" for each of the three babies has been. The first time we had a few of the typical showers, complete with games and presents and mountains of baby blue decorations. The second time I had a spiritual "Blessing Way" with all my close female friends. And this time we are painting. Totally different, and yet each time exactly what we needed.

Earlier, Robbie and I got into yet another name discussion, which never goes well. I offered several new options, he at least considered them (which is a positive step) and then rejected them. Then - out of nowhere - he comes up with Sylvia. I suggested Sylvia a long time ago in this process and he rejected it immediately. Now suddenly he is in love with this name. I am skeptical that the love will last, but I mention it because thinking about the name led me to rediscover one of Sylvia Plath's poems that is fitting for this time period.

(Unless something momentous happens, I promise to let this be the last bitch fest until she is born. After that, I can't be held accountable for what I say or do under the influence of sleep deprivation.)


Clownlike, happiest on your hands,
Feet to the stars, and moon-skulled,
Gilled like a fish. A common-sense
Thumbs-down on the dodo's mode.
Wrapped up in yourself like a spool,
Trawling your dark, as owls do.
Mute as a turnip from the Fourth
Of July to All Fools' Day,
O high-riser, my little loaf.

Vague as fog and looked for like mail.
Farther off than Australia.
Bent-backed Atlas, our traveled prawn.
Snug as a bud and at home
Like a sprat in a pickle jug.
A creel of eels, all ripples.
Jumpy as a Mexican bean.
Right, like a well-done sum.
A clean slate, with your own face on.

by Xiaohong Zhang, found at The Daily Page


  1. Good Luck! I hope the painting party goes well. Of coarse I think Sylvia is a wonderful name and I can't wait to meet this little girl!

  2. that's a beautiful post Cassie- wishing you all the luck in the world as you make it through this final time of waiting and doing.

    may your birth go smoothly and well.


  3. I'm so excited for you! I can't wait! I remember how these last couple of weeks suck! You'll be missing your big 'ole pregnant belly before you know it. :D

    P.S. Could you PLEEEEASE post some pics of yourself. I love pregnancy pics...even 3rd pregnancy pics! :)

  4. I remember this feeling so vividly. Our bodies are so amazing, and bounce back so fast. After six weeks postpartum with my last child, I was happily jumping on the trampoline with my boys, it was all I could think about the last month of pregnancy.... having enough energy to really play with them again. The euphoria of that moment, and the miraculousness of having so much energy so quickly has always stuck in my head for some reason. Hang in there.

  5. Ok, so I may be just one of those people who keeps asking u when r u due :) sorry , did not get a chance to go to ur blog for a while :) now I know ! Yippeeee !! Am so excited for u! Not to forget ,u look lovely ! How come u never put on weight ???? Ur as skinny as before :)

    Btw I have started a Motherandchildcebu yahoo group for the locals and would like to put the poems there if u r ok with it :) it will be a head start for other moms to write about their experiences and maybe a poem or two :)

    Maybe once u Settle I'n with the little one and I have more members , I would like to invite u to the group and share ur beautiful writings with the group as a mom to 3 kids !!

    Let me know if it's ok with ya !!!