Journeys, The Pink and The Blue

By Megan

I’ll spend this week packing and training and mentally preparing to participate in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure in my adopted home city, Chicago, starting Friday. But the busy-ness and excitement of this culminating week, after many months of fundraising and walking and shoe-fittings and sock-experimentation hasn’t in the least overshaded my maternal nostalgia for these same few days two years ago, when instead of packing blister treatments and water bottles and air mattresses and for camp, I was packing tiny t-shirts and newborn diapers and slippers and gowns for the hospital, and waiting and wondering and praying about another amazing journey – the journey I’d take as Bean’s mother, towards becoming the mother of my Bean and my new Peanut. Such sweet times, made sweeter now by the looking back, and the knowing how full and deep and beautiful that journey has been and will continue to be.

Originally published July, 2008.

Every few days, Bean and I wander into the baby’s room, and as I hover at the edge of his crib, she climbs up to stand on the railing beside me, close enough that I can breathe in her scent and tuck an arm around her to pull her in against me. Together we gaze down at the freshly-laundered alphabet linens, the carefully-selected soft, friendly stuffed bears and puppies and even an old plaid moose.

In my mind, I’m picturing a tiny son of mine, lying neatly swaddled and just-fed there, maybe sleeping, maybe just quietly peeping up at me out of his blanket, and this imagined wide-eyed newborn stare grips my heart just as his tiny, clutching, trusting fingers will clutch my own. I know what I feel inside; a certain ever-growing sense of longing, of missing a boy I’ve yet to meet, but whom I so love already that his absence from my arms these last slowly-passing weeks he’s still in my belly threaten to overwhelm me at times.

And I look over at my sweet daughter, there with me, close as my own breath, as she has been since these same mother’s arms longed to hold and comfort her own tiny newborn form, and I ask her quietly, What are you thinking about, baby girl?

The question, to me, must be almost whispered. The moment deserves a hush, a reverence, for all it signifies.

I’m finkin’ about Peanut, she replies matter-of-factly. He’s gonna sweep in my crib that I’m sharing wif him.

Yes, he is. How do you feel about that?

Good, she says, simply, her eyes suddenly brightening and as they begin to search the printed sheets. Mama, look. L for lollipop! Do you see it?

I do see it! And look! H is for helicopter. See the helicopter?


Thus for the moment, my reverie broken, the hush evaporates into daily life. And on we go, this child and I, on into the future, our time as just the two of us, mother and daughter, ticking away loudly, oblivious to the weight it carries on its steadily beating wings.

And I think to myself, this must be what it is to love two children – these distinct cravings for one and the other, the mystery and energy of them causing even time itself to crawl and fly simultaneously along its path toward what will be and away from what has always been – this heart equally devoted to and aching for both.

Megan also blogs at FriedOkra.

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