Saturday, March 28, 2009

Deja vu

Baker’s due date was March 28 of last year and also my last day at work. My thoughtful coworkers threw me a baby shower earlier in March. They stayed after work one evening and built the most creative diaper cake I’ve ever seen. There was a homemade cake decorated with a sailboat made of icing. It was a small affair with the ladies that I am closest to, the last of a series of four baby showers given by our families and coworkers. Chris’ coworkers had gathered on a previous Saturday to celebrate our coming baby. They presented us with a stunning rug for the nursery.

On due date minus one, I had my hair cut one last time. The ladies in the salon swooned over my belly and declared that I was “all baby”. I knew better-there was no way I was carrying a 45-lb baby. At home, I painted my fingernails with a sensible clear polish and, with the help of creative stretching, managed to reach my toes with light pink paint. Soon I wouldn’t have time for haircuts or primping.

This time last year, Baker was alive and active and squirmy in my belly, heart beating away. He never slowed down as he grew bigger, as I was told would happen as he ran out of room. Every morning at work I dutifully counted his kicks, and each time it took less than 10 minutes to count 10 kicks. Our plans were all in place. The nursery was complete, and we’d been riding around for weeks with the car seat installed. I wasn’t impatient or anxious or physically uncomfortable, only happy that we would meet him soon. We were on his timetable. I wanted him to cook as long as he needed to.

And there we were back at the birth center this past week. What pediatrician have you chosen? Do you plan to circumcise? Don't forget to add your baby to your health insurance. Here we go again. Going through the same steps all over again makes me feel like we’re jinxing ourselves. Let’s get this baby out safely and then deal with the details, OK? It didn’t work out last time, so why do we think it might work out this time?

In all the times Chris and I have been to the birth center, this is the first time the door to the hallway that leads to the bedrooms has ever been closed. I know there’s a mother back there, probably in the same bedroom that I was. The father follows his toddler into the waiting room. I avoid his glance and think I hope your baby makes it.

This time last year, Chris dragged a beach chair from the garage, and I sat in the spring sun with my squirming belly, watching him rake the lawn and flower beds. And here I am now, sitting in the sun with my belly full of baby boy-waiting, again.


Mrs. Spit said...

waiting with you.

Isn't it funny. When I touch a pregnant woman's tummy, at least a part of me is saying "baby, please don't die".

Samaria said...

im waiting with ya as well. I don't even want to talk about the baby being here until he is here.

Hope's Mama said...

Oh Dalene, I can so imagine what this must feel like. Just keep going through the motions, all the while chanting to yourself (if you have to) "most babies live". I think that is the only way I will ever get through.

bir said...

I looked at a baby yesterday born to friends not long after Ciaran came and was lost, and the words in my head were 'you lived'.
Most of them do. The biggest difference is that most of their mama's are also very, very innocent in the maybe's and could be's.

Reba said...

Waiting with you too...knowing the fear and the hopes that we fall on the right side of statistics this time...

Lani said...

this week must be very tough for you both. i am constantly thinking of you! that diaper cake is fantastic...though i think next time around you probably want nothing execept a healthy screaming baby.
sending much love and thoughts to the 4 of you this week...xo

janis said...

That truly was some diaper cake!

((hugs)) waiting with you.

Mira said...

Your family has been in my thoughts alot this week - instead of posting a fake candle on MDC, or even lighting a real one for Baker's birthday, I was thinking of making a donation in Baker's memory. Is there a particular organization you and Chris would prefer? let me know on my blog.