Vivi and I are figuring out a system.

One element of that system is that she now showers with me, strange, but kind of a must given that her favorite thing to do in my room when left unattended is turn the volume dial on the stereo all the way up, then turn the stereo on. Addie did the same thing once at Vivi’s age and literally scared the crap out of herself, Vivi just thinks it’s hysterical.

After breakfast we head upstairs, she runs to the side of the tub tearing at her clothes while simultaneously trying to dive head first into the tub. Once she’s undressed, she sits down and splashes in the water by my feet. Occasionally she’ll take a pouf and scrub my leg and I can always count on getting poked in my bellybutton at least once. Once I’m all clean I rinse out the bubbles, put in the stopper and fill the tub with a few inches of water so I can get ready and she can stay entertained and contained. Oh master bathroom, you’re the best.

Fresh and clean piggies.

We take a little walk everyday after lunch, they’ve become shorter as it has become colder but they maintain the same pattern: wave at the planes, bark at the dogs, poke mom with all the sticks, throw all the rocks, tweet at all the birds and scream “BYE!” to all the cars.

If we were to have kids close in age like my sister and I are I would need to be 6 months pregnant right now.

(Can you hear the hysterical voices laughing in my head?)

We still call Vivi the baby, and far as all of us are concerned? She is a baby. While we’re certainly not throwing our hands up in the air and saying NO MORE BABIES FOR US! but we are in agreement that we’ll let Vivi be our baby for as long as possible, even if that means forever.

After Addie there was so much to worry about when it came to having a second baby beyond the stress of simply getting and staying pregnant. Vomiting through pregnancy, antenatal depression, postpartum depression and all that other stuff that comes with newborns. With Vivi all those problems were there, except for the postpartum depression. Sure, secondary infertility was a fat stupid blowhole, but Vivi came exactly when she was supposed to. I earned a big old gold sticker in patience and trusting in the will of God when it comes to babies with that little six year trial.

Vomiting through pregnancy? Pretty darn horrible. But I had (and continue to have) an amazing support system around me and generic Zofran for $12, amen.

Antenatal depression? Look, if there is any argument or debate I’m willing to go all in on it’s the one about depression medication while pregnant. Something in my brain is wired completely wrong and it will never be fixed with surgery or lots of good, happy thoughts. When the risk to me and my unborn baby outweigh the possible side effects of medication while pregnant? I’ll take the pill and thank modern medicine, thank you very much.

My labors are easy (thanks wide hips!) my babies come out healthy (thanks God, genetics, modern medicine, and body for working in unison on that one!) and while postpartum depression nearly did me in with Addie, it didn’t even touch me with Vivi, meaning that I have been able to spend the last 18 months fully immersed in my own life and it has been wonderful.

Funny how when something terrible ends on a good note it can shift our whole perception of an event if we let it.

Take Cody and me for example, we had an awful three years that culminated in what I call the horrible ugly. We stuck it out, fought for us and now ours is a true love story better than most anything Hollywood could come up with. If you were to ask me in the thick of the horrible ugly if marriage was worth it? I would have thrown things just to watch them break. But if you ask me now? I will say that marriage, even with all of its crap, growing pains and potential garbage is the very best thing I have done with my life.

Ask me how much I’m looking forward to another baby as I’m barfing in aisle 8 at noon on a Tuesday? I’ll punch you.

Ask me after the last 18 months of magic with this little face?

miss vivi on a wednesday.

I’ll scream “BABIES FOR EVERYONE!”

We can’t lie about the ugly when we tell others about our sweet, that isn’t fair. And when we find ourselves envying the position of others we must take into consideration how much gunk they’ve waded through to get where they are at.

In order to distinguish light, we have to have darkness.

In order to have any frame of reference or gratitude for true happiness? We have to know absolute misery.

I am happier than I have ever been at this point not because I fit in a certain size, have great hair, a great family or a great job.

I am happy because I have gone through so much to get here, I can accept that great won’t last forever, but it will always come back if I’m willing to acknowledge it when it does.

 

Comments

  1. Before Vivi was born, I would have said you could NEVER make another baby as cute as Addie. And then you did.

    That wasn’t really the point of this post at all, or this comment. But yes, babies for everyone, especially if they’re as cute as yours!

    So happy you’re in such a good place. Makes the heart so happy.

  2. I just want to cheer — not just for you, but for everyone who’s come out on the other side. I am so happy for you, lovely!

  3. Wow! I love this post. I’m in the midst of some ugly right now and hoping the “yeah! HAPPY!” comes back soon! Blessings to you!

  4. We have to have darkness to distinguish the light. Amen. Your post brings back memories of showering with my second, Lily, who behaved much the same as Vivi does about showers. If I got up for the day before her, and she heard the shower.. she would toddle in all bleary eyed tearing at her pajamas to get lifted into the shower. She never wanted to miss it.

  5. so well told and thought out. as usual!
    i love reading you and about all your “normal”.

    i admire you for getting out of the ugly. that’s where i’m kinda stuck it seems.

    so happy for you!

  6. Amen! I agree wholeheartedly (on sharing the ugly with the sweet)

  7. Yes. Just yes. I have been through so much ugly to get to the sweet. It was worth it. But if you had asked me then? I would have cried and jumped off a bridge. It’s all about timing.

  8. Amy in StL says:

    But let’s just be honest here: You do have some great hair! :)

  9. “In order to distinguish light, we have to have darkness.”

    This.

  10. I LOVED this!! And I agree, the ugly along with the good make us who we are!!

  11. I have wide hips, too. But was told at my first prenatal exam that I have a narrow pelvic opening. WHAT THE WHAT?? How is that possible? I have been told for years that I have child bearing hips, darn it, I better have an easy labor.

    Oh right, back to the post…She will always be your baby… No matter how old she gets. :)

  12. This changed my night. Thank you, thank you for giving me the hope I have so desperately needed this past year. I’m saving this post on my computer to read as much as I need it!

  13. I am happy for you!

  14. I loved reading this so much. I love that you’re in a happy place with your second despite all that came before. As a recent new mom for the second time, this makes me smile.

  15. So happy for you! You always seem to write the right posts, just when I need them.

    Finally after battling my broken brain on my own for 10 years I’m getting the professional help that I was too stubborn to admit that I needed. I’m hoping my ugly turns to lovely soon too.

  16. totally agree with you on antidepressants during pregnancy. I’m almost in my second tri and my Lexapro has been a god send. It means I can be there for the two perfect pre-schoolers I already have. There is a huge different in this pregnancy and the last one.

  17. Amazing…love you. I’ve been hugged so tightly with depression and some times it hurts like all the swear words combined, that I don’t know who I can trust to talk to about it. I can’t have any more children. Thankful I had 1 however I constantly feel left out as others have moved on to #2 & #3…so on an so forth.

  18. Absolutely beautiful and so very true.

  19. you say “BABIES FOR EVERYONE”
    i think, “BABIES EVERYWHERE!”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6rE0EakhG8

  20. “Can’t lie about the ugly . . . .” I like that. I think that epitomizes why I told anyone who would listen that I had PPD. It was hard b/c I’m a very private person, and I never like show what I think of as weaknesses, but I figured if it helped one other person to not feel alone or guilty in their PPD, then it was worth it. Thank you for sharing your own PPD story. I think it made it easier for me to share mine.

  21. YOU give me so much hope, plain simple. You give me hope that things in my marriage can work out, that happiness can find me. You give me hope that after all this crap FINALLY there will be something to celebrate. Thank you for the hope, I need it.

  22. My current favorite quote (changes often!)…

    There’s always going to be bad stuff out there. But here’s the amazing thing… light trumps darkness every time. You can stick a candle into the dark but you can’t stick the dark into the light.

  23. Thank you, from another mommy who has a brain that does not work quite right and continued her medication throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding. Happy mommy = happy baby. I wish more women could feel supported in this decision.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Hate it.I pretty much love whatever Casey writes, but this one is especially beautiful this week::: the one about thanking the ugly for all of the lovely.One more post about finding thankfulness when it is hard::: The Peculiarity of Gratitude. /**/Share [...]