Sunday, July 13, 2014

The calm before the storm

These are the times when writing out the moment feels so necessary. I am in the throws of the final days of what is officially my last pregnancy. My mind and my body have had enough. There is no more telling myself to enjoy the last of it, because it's just too hot to think about anything being all that enjoyable. My skin is too stretched, my back is too achy, and my sleep is too interrupted to pretend to be that mindful any longer. I have no desire to have an early baby. I just have a lot of desire to not be pregnant anymore. One day I am going to cry about that because I will desperately want to be pregnant again. When that day comes I'll pour a glass of wine and cry it out…and then move past it. 

Trying to come to terms with what's to come before it happens seems like a futile effort. One can't really know what's ahead even if similar past experiences are fresh on the brain. 

I remember life with a newborn as clearly as if it just happened yesterday. But, I have no concept of life with two children AND a newborn. 

I remember the first day I left my baby while I went to work. I remember the first day I sent both girls to preschool. But, I have never sent a child to her first day of Kindergarten at a new school possibly within days of having a baby. 

I remember the chaos that felt consuming for weeks and months after having baby number two. This time I'm ready for that part. I'm ready for a house that's never clean, diapers, breastfeeding, and general disarray. I'm ready to start over on this crazy ride.

What I've come to appreciate about the ride is the calm before the storm. I'm sitting in my clean house on my clean couch next to my worn out dog while my kids are dreaming about swimming pools and cookouts. My husband is having a much deserved night out, and I can take the time to write about how peaceful it all feels…in this moment. I can reminisce about a summer spent watching my girls enjoy the day. There's room to breathe in the few hours before going to bed. The calm is a lovely thing. 

But man do I love a good storm. 

Growing up my mom would sit by a window or even outside during a storm. There was actually one summer where she sat on the balcony of a condo we rented at the beach watching an impending hurricane on it's way in. I remember feeling mesmerized by it and by her fascination with it. Years later I spent a few months traveling all over Europe. Would you believe one of my fondest memories of that trip was walking out into the rain in a heavily wooded area somewhere on the outskirts of Rome? I headed to the outdoor showers (this was a budget trip to say the least) and was startled by a very large deer blocking my path just a few feet in front of the shower I was headed to. He seemed to be avoiding the storm while I was standing right in it. 

Yes, I am comparing having a baby to a wind gusting, rain pouring, lightning crashing sort of storm. At the end of the day, isn't that what it's like in the best, most overwhelming way?

Here's to the calm in all it's glory and the excitement of the storm to come. 

Honestly, I'll be thrilled with shirts that cover my midsection and snuggling a baby as opposed to a giant pillow between my legs. 



  1. So wonderfully put Jana. Newborns are a storm - so much in the way that they tear our lives apart and make us damp and dirty, but also in the ways that they can refresh and renew us, feed us and help us grow.

    Waiting out my own personal storm over here in a state of denial. :)

  2. Eek - I can't believe it's already almost time! That crazy life you describe sounds beautiful in it's way...just like a storm, actually. I always notice how green everything looks just before it's about to rain. It is my absolute favorite time to be outside. Sounds like your life is full of greenery now, too. :)

  3. Hurricane Erin. I'll never forget it. But it wasn't so much that I was fascinated by the storms as it was that I was determined to face them head on. I mean, if something was going to "get" me and mine, I was going to stare it down first!! I figured maybe I could conquer it before it conquered me, you know? So your analogy of your calm before the storm of a new baby is dead on, Jana. Stare it down and conquer it. It's not a futile effort. And it will be every bit as stormy and as calm as you expect it to be. All you can do is continue to enjoy the calm AND the storm ... and always know the difference!! I love you so much! This post is amazing!! Never stop writing. You do it so well.


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