It is a peculiar thing to be waiting on a baby. It is even more peculiar to assign a human being a due date, or to feel that one is "late" once this date approaches and the baby is a no-show. Clearly, I am a few days past one of these due dates, as they are called.
Although people are assuming I am chomping at the bit, I am quite happy to sit here in this gap of time wherein a baby could come at any second, or not, so therefore I have nothing to do but just tinker around.
It is a pause and I am thankful for it. There haven't been too many pause moments throughout this pregnancy; it's been a GO marathon. In fact, there haven't been too many pause moments since Cedar was born. Nope. Self-reflection is now available when I am driving to work or washing the dishes, or waking up at 4am to pee and all these thoughts barrel in when I should be sleeping.
It is quite a thing to become a mother. It's a popular rumour that a woman is changed forever, or loses her self, or won't get her life back, or that her days will be punctuated and spelled out by self-sacrifice. Definitely, there was the loss of self - a certain self. And definitely life changed, and most certainly I had to make a lot of room for someone else. And honestly, I had/have to do a whole ton of things I don't want to do. Those changes all seem obvious at this point. But there is something else, and I think it is the something that doesn't get talked about all too often. It is about who replaces that lost self: the mother. You may think of her as frumpy or forgotten or messy, but she is just about the sexiest creature I have ever met. This woman is covered in life's everyday messes and still manages to crack smiles, get food on the table, and do that freakin' fish puzzle with her kid for the thousandth time. She is vibrant and soulful, gets angry, gets soft, finds happiness in the tiniest little simple things, and loses her shit completely at least a couple times a week but recovers like a champ.
I have met, and become close with, and admired many of these women since I had Cedar. I think it is even fair to say that I have become one of them. It's a righteous club. More hardcore than anything I've ever done before.
So here is this pause, this abyss before I give birth to my second (and last) baby. Today I imagined myself driving on a highway in Phoenix, Arizona that I have taken many times. It boasts a perfect horizon, one you can really see and feel as it approaches. I was picturing this road and thinking about the whole idea of coming to the edge. See - I've always imagined the edge as a cliff, one you are supposed to jump off of. That idea of jumping off has never fit with me. I mean, I get it, but why would I just go and jump off a cliff? It occurred to me that the edge is simply a place I haven't been to before. It is that point on the road that is new and unknown and scares me. There is no jumping required - just the will to go forward, to explore, to be present. I am here now inside this edge.
I don't know any other way to say it except that I want to be free. This moment here is not just about having a baby, but of birthing myself again into this next incarnation. I am not a maiden becoming a mother, about to be devastated by the loss of ego. Now I am a mother birthing my new self.
I see this as an opportunity to choose the form that my life takes after things settle down on the home front. I've been mulling over and dreaming up all kinds of things for a couple years now, simply waiting for the time and energy and personal juju that could bring it all together.
It has become clear to me how much I do because I think I have to, or because it is my duty or obligation, or because if I don't do it, who will? Could it be possible to live life as if everything were a choice? What would that feel like? What would change? I have the sense that it would change everything. This is what I am sitting here with in the abyss; the chance to let it all go. Begin anew. Turn the corner. Find the new edges and valleys and twists that are all part of this crazy journey.
Well, Little One in utero. Thanks for giving me a few days to figure all this shit out. You can come out now.