I hit a wall tonight.
I’m done with being pregnant. I don’t want to go to sleep only to be wide awake for three hours between 2am and 5am with nothing to do. I’m due November 8th and have a wedding scheduled for November 12th that I promised to photograph for at least a portion of unless I’m in active labor -and, you know what, that’s the silly thing that’s doing my head in right now. The seed of my impatience. Because I want my body to be somewhat recovered from delivering my baby before I dive back into wedding photography. Even though I have two fabulous, capable women who will be covering the event with me, I still want to be 100% and do what I said I was going to do. And not still be pregnant while trying to shoot it, worrying that at any moment my water may break and cause a crazy distraction. And me left to drive myself home. In labor.
I know…. Kelly! WHY?!
Let’s just leave that alone and say, hey, it’s me.
So the wall. The one I hit tonight.
It’s coated in a smushy substance called self-pity. I hit the wall, covered myself in the goo and spent the evening waffling between deciding it was okay to feel pathetic and worn out and tired of being pregnant and not knowing when the baby was going to come and facing the fact that it may very well be significantly passed my due date and mess up my work plans —aaaaargh!!— And between calling myself a big, selfish wimp, and telling myself I need to get over it. That I’m not in control and having a pity party isn’t going to change the fact. Or anything, for that matter, except make myself (and those around me) a bit on the miserable side.
The big kids were tucked in bed and Waverley came out of her room a few minutes later complaining of feeling sick.
I helped her take a warm bath. Then off to bed.
Five minutes later, she can’t sleep because she doesn’t feel well.
I gave her some medicine and said that’s the most we could do. Off to bed.
Two minutes later and teary eyed, she stood at the top of the stairs and said she still couldn’t sleep and was it alright if she stayed up with us.
Me? No. It’s not alright. Because I’m pregnant and want to numb out to an old rerun (that’s not PG) until I’m tired enough to go to bed and not focus on the little baby doing backflips in my tummy. Sorry, sister, but I’ve done all I can do. Scram.
Sniffles and sad, pathetic little cries come from upstairs as she slowly makes her way down the hall to her room.
Brian reminds me that this thing I’m doing…isn’t working.
I turn off the tv, let her come downstairs and sit with me on the couch, my head now buried in a book. I’m indignant.
Brian beckons her over to him and she snuggles on his lap in the recliner. They play several rounds of thumb war and he gives her a stuffed animal to cuddle. They giggle and play. After awhile he switches off the reading lamp and they both slowly begin to doze until they’re both out cold.
I haven’t been reading my book.
Instead, I’ve been staring at them playing and being loving and gentle and joyful. Things I just didn’t have in me at the time.
And I am filled up with thankfulness -and humility- that when I am plumb out of grace, Brian can step in and provide it.
I have holes. He has holes. But when we are put together, there’s a lot less leakage because we overlap. And that’s the power of two, why I believe it is important for parents to parent together. We all lose our minds, our grace, our shit. And we can’t be everything to everyone. So when I’m at the bottom of the pool, he is there to be life guard for the wee ones doing cannon balls and tottering along the edge. And visa versa.
Tonight I am abundantly thankful for the grace I was able to witness between my husband and daughter. Even though it was because I was graceless.
Brian, thank you for covering for me. I need you and I am thankful for our overlap. Two is better than one.