Waiting to Exhale: 40 Weeks

"Is it three weeks yet?" I'd told her that Baby Brother was coming in three weeks, three weeks ago. He was due. He was overdue. Having been late for most things in my own life, I was not worried. This was not a cause for concern; this was simply an inherited trait.

So we wait.

This state of limbo, now that the awaited date has come and gone and the awaited event seems to have been only imagined, has left me feeling like I'm going through a series of non-days: no plans, nothing to start, nothing to finish, just time passing. I catch myself thinking: am I not pregnant? I often don't feel like I am until I need to turn over in bed, or put on pants, or pick up a dropped object from the floor. Now, when I talk about going into labor, I have almost convinced myself that what that means is that it's time to pick up "the package" from the Baby Store, instead of the excruciating series of events that lies ahead. "Babe, I'm in labor; get the bags," and off we go on a pleasant family trip to new baby land, a week-long visit that we can look back on fondly, rather than stepping into the singular life-changing moment that will proceed to redefine our every day, ever after.    

I have never been less ready for something in my entire life.

My Garden of Small Graces (Updated)

What does it take for a plant to grow? Soil plus water plus sun, right? That's what I was taught in kindergarten, and that's why I believe school doesn't prepare you for real life. Because if that's all it takes to succeed in gardening (just like it just takes a dream to succeed in life, they say), then this garden would be an Eden, not a green grave.

I started this garden project a few months year ago and I've had to bury more than a few hopes (in a new pot of soil, hoping they would grow again). An arrangement I bought from a local succulent grower died in two weeks (from overwatering, I believe—loved to death). A succulent that was thriving in one pot died when I moved it up to my hot but apparently sun-deficient office (those are its leaves you see in a rooting rosette). But every once in a while, a new leaf appears, a tiny white root peeks out, or a tired plant reunites with the sunlight and finds what it was looking for.

A humbled amateur, I'm thankful for the little graces Nature tosses her way, just enough to get my hands back in the dirt again the next day.

Labor Countdown: Packing the Big Sister Bag

Even with Baby Two's arrival just around the corner, we've been shockingly relaxed (or just lazy). Hospital bags are semi-packed; birthing ball has been bought, but hasn't been inflated. We just set up the co-sleeper last night. Is this the way it is for all second-time parents? (I'm going to say yes to make myself feel better.)

Today, I put together a Big Sister bag to leave for E when we leave for the hospital. Every second-time mom I'd talked advised me to have a gift ready for the new big sibling when the baby arrived so he or she wouldn't feel left out. Since we aren't going to have the usual Filipino busload of family members coming to visit us at the hospital bearing gifts, I'm not too worried about E feeling like she's being overlooked in the gift department; however, I did want to leave her with things she can keep busy with while Woolim and I are busy with the baby, as well to give her a gift from her baby brother, since she's been so graciously picking out gifts to give him whenever we're out shopping.