Monday, January 08, 2007

The amazing weirdness of being

I had a bad feeling about this.

The "big day" rolled around and we were all sick.

Ittybit had been on the mend, but a belly full of cherry tomatoes came back to haunt her at midnight. I was in the throes of the worst of the vomiting, wondering if I should just postpone it until we all felt 100 percent.

The obstetrics appointment, that is.

The ultrasound; the prodding, the poking -- all of it might best be left to another day.

And yet, the guilty part of me that says you must not procrastinate; you must avoid the glaring voice at the other end of the phone -- the one whose job it is to reschedule these hard-fought appointments. The one who undoubtedly will say: "You know each one of these appointments is IMPORTANT!"

Oh, but bringing a clingy toddler because you really don't want to send her to daycare with an ounce of residual illness that she can lob in the direction of another unassuming preschooler, seemed worse.

Would it even be possible to see the newbie taking up residence in the womb Ittybit once shared through the clingy little girl who’d undoubtedly wrap her tiny body around me as soon as I tried to put her down?

I can do this, I thought optimistically. We can do this.

And so we did.

As usual, I arrived early (operating under the misguided premise that if you arrive early you have a chance of being seen early) and we waited. And waited. And waited.

After the second trip to the bathroom and the 100th "We'll be called when it's our turns," we were called.

To my surprise Ittybit sat quietly in the chair by the door where I'd put our things. She said she didn't want to see her baby on the television screen. She looked away as I turned to sit on the examining table.

The technician applied the gel and started probing around; looking first at the internal organs before going in for a gander at the real goods. I turned my head to ask Ittybit if she could see and she answered "no" with a scowl in her voice. It seemed she didn't want to look. I turned back to the monitor.

But just as the little baby appeared in the screen, a little hand took mine.

No words, just her hand in mine.

It was really the oddest thing.

She wouldn't talk about what happened in that darkened room for the rest of that day. She wouldn't look at the printouts the technician had given us. It was as if none of it ever happened.

But the next day, when we were both feeling better, she headed to school and me to work, she asked to see the pictures so she could show her friend "Elias," the new baby, whose "head was here and body was right there."

I listened at the door for a while as she explained about the "goop" they put on her mommy's belly, and how this was her little sister ...

She poked her head back into the room where I was listening and yelled ... "Hey, Ma? When is my baby sister coming?"

"In July, sweetie. In July."


wordgirl said...

Sometimes little ones just need time to accept things on their own schedule. I'm glad Ittybit did. She'll make a wonderful big sister.

Julie K in Taiwan said...

Very precious!

I'm sure you've heard of the "What to expect when you're expecting" series. Well, they've got some picture books for kids. Right now Jaylene's favorite book is the "What to expect when your mommy's having a baby" She told me yesterday that we have to read the "Baby Book" everyday before the other stories. I think it's helped her put together all the crazy events that have been happening. I'm on the hunt for "What to expect when the new baby comes home".

Whirlwind said...

That is the sweetest thing I have ever heard. I'm glad she's accepting her role as big sister.

Melissa R. Garrett said...

Hooray for Ittybit, and to YOU for surviving the appointment with a toddler!! I remember those days well when I was pregnant with Jacob and Hannah was barely 19 months old. One doctor even wrote on my chart "brings toddler to appointments" whatever the heck that meant!

PS - Yeah for July birthdays! Bridget's is the 5th and Hannah's is the 27th :-)

tracey said...

OK, I have major chills. So so sweet.

the mama said...

oh my goodness. she's so grown beyond her years sometimes. the hand holding would have pushed me near the edge.

and again - congratulations!

toyfoto said...

That is one moment, Michaela, that if I live to be 100 I will never forget!

ECR said...

I don't remember for sure if it's Ittybit I once read a commenter refer to as an "old soul," but it certainly seems appropriate. In a way that must've be initially disconcerting, I imagine her slow acceptance to be the most comforting feeling a mother could hope for.

Girl About Town said...

Wow. That is the most gorgeous thing I've ever read!!! Just the sweetest most gorgeous thing ever. You must be so proud of your little sweetheart!