Friday, June 19, 2009


Today I was brave, out walking on sharp rocks with spring-new feet and pretending I couldn't feel a thing. We stopped in a little shopping area to use the bathroom on our way home from my parents' house in New Hampshire, and we were drawn into a little children's store having a big sale. So I put on a big, cheery smile and the kids and I picked out a sunny little ducky outfit in a newborn size, which will look perfect with our hand-knitted newborn sweater that our babies wear home. A vote of confidence for the little Peanut. A stride in the right direction for me. And plus? I looked like a normal, happy expectant mom in the store, happily thinking ahead to Thanksgiving time without reserve. I so, so want to be that mom.

On another note, there is this thing that happens when you lose your first baby, and then go on to have more. Your second child teaches you, belatedly, what you have been missing out on. Five is so absolutely amazing. So amazing. I am so glad I did not know what I was missing last year, but I look back now and weep for the thought of what she would have done. And would be doing. So much more complex than learning to talk and walk, as important as those milestones are. In the past four months Liam has learned to:

-Ride a bike really well
-Read and write at a much more comfortable level
-Pump on a swing really independently and well
-Become my friend for real, for real

Now I know all kids develop differently, and some of you with four year olds are thinking, my kid could do that a while ago to some of those. But all these things suddenly came all at once for Liam, and on top of that, he is just the absolute easiest child I could imagine (with a little teasing his sister thrown in just so I'm sure he's for real). He is helpful, cooperative, and always delightedly happy. He entertains himself so beautifully, loves to sit and color, reads to himself, reads to his sister (!), or just plays quietly. This is such a huge change from what he was like a year ago. He is, for all intents and purposes, a person. Ha! Someone I can relate to, who I don't have to bribe or convince or con, he is somebody I can talk to. He is fascinated by all sorts of science and history and we read reams of books on different subjects. This week-- a biography of Christopher Columbus. I'll have to edit some of that, I'm sure, but I just can't believe that this child whose diapers I was changing three years ago is this fully formed person. It is amazing.

And so I'm coming to miss my friendship with Charlotte, and it's a real friendship I'm discovering with Liam right now as we can explore our way through the world together in a more mature fashion. I wonder what we would have loved to explore together, to read about. I wonder what her strengths would have been. I wonder what she would have liked about me.


rebeccaeee said...

I love that Liam is turning into a such a young man. For what its worth, even the non-babylost have trouble attaching to subsequent children sometimes. I'm 4 1/2 months in and haven't purchased anything new. Too much time spent worrying how this one's arrival will impact my wonderful son that I haven't really begun to think of it in independent terms yet. We just found out its a girl...I'm hoping this will help me warm up to the much-wanted but still-abstract critter in my belly.

Inanna said...

The losses are forever. Graduation from high school. Graduation from college. Marriage. Grandchildren. It's just such a forever-loss :(