Category Archives: IVF
dear c-section scar,
I didn’t want you.
I wanted an unmedicated birth.
I had my doula, my music playlist, my electric candles.
to get my baby in my arms however, I ended up getting you too.
but now I’m grateful for you.
every day when I see you, every moment that I feel a tender, sore, or numb spot below my bellybutton- I am reminded that my body grew a human.
I am reminded of the infertility battle I fought.
I am reminded of those days of utter despair, flipping over another pregnancy test and seeing it stark white and negative. it sometimes feels easy to forget the past, when now all I feel is this all consuming love for my child. but you remind me of what I endured to get him, and for that- I embrace and celebrate you.
I am grateful for all of it.
the treacherous journey where literally nothing went to plan… my finn, and you, were worth it all.
a feeling so immense; a tightness in your chest nearly uncontainable that tingles through your limbs. genuine fulfillment, utter safety, total bliss.
thank you to my husband for forever pausing this sleeping moment for me.
I am in awe of motherhood.
five. months. old. today.
I can’t believe it.
you still have yet to roll back onto your belly like you did nearly a month and half ago. your toes are still far more interesting, but mostly you prefer interacting with mom and dad rather than exploring toys.
we sing all day long and insert your name into the lyrics. you have dance offs with your daddy. nebula utterly fascinates you and you’ll stop whatever your doing to watch her.
you have TWO TEETH.
you’ll turn the pages of your books, and love to chew on our hands. you’re ticklish under your neck and on your collar bone. you yell with delight, suppress your laugh as a game. when we’re in a new place with new people, you become very quiet and observant.
you weigh 20 lbs, and yet I still cannot pack up your newborn clothes in your dresser.
your morning wake up coos melt my heart.
each day with you is better than the last, my finn.
I love you, I love you, I love you so.
growing up, I actually really loved being “different” than everyone else during this time of year- celebrating hanukkah and not christmas.
and while I took pride in lighting candles, I remember always being captivated by my friend’s ornaments on their christmas trees. I was enamored with learning about the stories behind certain ornaments- ones that marked specific occasions, special events, antique heirlooms. little time capsules. even as a child, the nostalgic and sentimental notion behind having these mementos hanging in a home for a short period of time made my heart flutter. the stories. ornaments perpetuated stories… family stories. I loved it.
I never actually celebrated christmas until being in a relationship with spenser. and when we moved in together, I found myself having to negotiate finding my comfort level with having christmas in my home. I have no shame admitting that I was (am?) the prideful jew that would wear a star of david necklace only in december in hopes that people would see it and not say “merry christmas” to me. I know. I know.
it became an ongoing joke between spenser and I that he would “turn me”. and one holiday season, he got me a gift which included two classic ornaments on it- his humorous way to “rub in” christmas into my jewish world. and that’s when I got the idea. though I didn’t know if I would ever be comfortable having a tree in my home, I would love to have ornaments to preserve memories of the years.
so, we made a holiday branch.
the first year, it was a literal branch from our yard, which we named “elbow”, and strung with lights and small plastic ornaments. I decorated the house with silly christmas-y trinkets, like “ugly sweaters” for our wine bottles, and a puffed ball reindeer stuffed animal. I even got pine tree clippings and put them in vases to give the tree smell that my husband loved.
and for the last 6 years, for the holidays, we don’t buy each other gifts.
instead, we give each other an ornament that symbolizes one of our favorite memories from that year together. that’s what we open christmas morning.
and I love it.
I love it so, so much.
this year, as we unboxed our ornaments with finn- I got to tell him 12 unique stories about our lives from the past 6 years.
our family time capsule lives on a dried manzanita tree that we bought from the downtown flower district. we light candles. we make latkes. we drink eggnog. we sing holiday songs from both holidays.
we have whimsy decorations. colorful pompoms. white wooden dreidels. pine garland.
our home is festive- but it’s not white and blue, nor red and green.
it’s us, not a holiday. whimsy. silly. sentimental.
and this year, finn contributed his first ornament to our branch. his favorite memory of the year? I hope it’s being born! his dried umbilical cord hangs alongside our other memories.
a bit untraditional? welcome to our family!
every christmas morning, the first thing spenser always asks me is, “do you think santa came?!”
to which I always snarkily reply “no!”
growing up jewish, I never celebrated christmas- but over the years, we’ve been slowly figuring out our own ways to celebrate this time of year. I love the traditions we’ve started, and I hope to share more about that later! I absolutely look forward to christmas morning in our home. it is so uniquely us.
but this morning, it was still our annual sketch routine.
spenser got up to change finn’s diaper, I went to the bathroom.
from outside the bathroom door, spenser yells, “do you think santa came?!”
“no!” I reply, as I always do.
“oh yeah?!”, spenser says, as I open the bathroom door, and he lifts up finn from his lap.
“we KNOW santa showed up!
he left behind one of his helpers!”
my cheeks hurt from laughing. my heart is full.
merry christmas, to those who celebrate today!