Dear, sweet Rainbow Baby A,
You are finally here. Today you turned four days old.
You arrived on Sunday morning, September 30th, at 10:21, after about thirteen hours of labour. It was a beautiful autumn day, and we could see spectacular orange and red trees from the hospital room.
Precious girl, it was so amazing to meet you, finally. I know that in some ways, I’ve been waiting for you for much longer than nine months. I really enjoyed feeling you move around in my belly, getting to know a bit of your personality that way… But that was nothing compared to the joy of holding you in my arms and seeing your perfect self at last.
You look like your big brother E, and your Daddy; there’s no denying it. (I guess Mama’s genes just can’t compete.) Actually, your Daddy and I both noticed right away that you look like your other brother, Sebastian, maybe even more. Your hair is brown, like his, just as I imagined it. Your cheeks are adorably round, your ears are perfect, and you have actual chubbiness in your legs and tummy (you weighed 8 lb, 8 oz – even more than E!). You have long monkey-toes, and slender, ladylike fingers (unlike either of your parents – I think maybe your Gramma Sue sent them).
Unlike E, you did the classic newborn thing and cried angrily when you found your breath. It was so good to hear your voice.
Then you calmed down when you were put on my chest and heard my familiar heartbeat. The elation we felt, seeing and hearing you in sturdy good health, was indescribable. I shed a lot of happy tears.
In the past four-and-a-half days, we’ve learned a few things about you.
- You have, as your Uncle Ben puts it, two modes: sleeping and hungry. You eat a LOT. Even on that first night in the hospital, when many newborns don’t eat much, you spent a good few hours learning to eat and asking for more. (Good thing your food is essentially free!)
- You are a bit nocturnal. Your longest awake periods have been at night. I should have guessed, considering how often I would lie down in bed at night and you would be dancing up a storm inside me.
- Although we didn’t see much of them the first day or two, you have beautiful eyes. I am mesmerized by them, during those moments (becoming more frequent) when you are calm and awake. You remind me of some kind of woodland creature, a chipmunk maybe.
- You are full of expressions, awake and asleep. We all just watch you in fascination. You have one face you make in particular that makes me think of a confused monkey and never fails to make me laugh.
- Your expressions extend to your hands, too. They are very eloquent and do lovely dances to match your face.
- You are very, very cuddly. I know babies are meant to be cuddly… it’s just so wonderful having the chance to enjoy this stage where you just curl up on somebody’s chest and sleep – your great-Auntie CL calls it the “tree frog stage”. You are so soft and snuggly and delicious, you’re irresistible.
- Everyone who meets you is delighted by you – especially your big brother. He was a little unsure for a few minutes when he first came to visit you in the hospital – I think he could see that his parents were going to have to spend a lot of time on you – but now he’s your biggest fan. He sings to you about how sweet and beautiful you are. He wants to give you hugs and kisses and touch your silky cheeks all the time; the only challenge is helping him remember how fragile you are, that he must contain his excitement enough to be safe around you. He is all ready to protect you (once he learns how).
We are so excited to be your parents, lovely girl. Thank you for being in our family. We love you more than words can express.
A very special thank you to LouLou West Photography for capturing these moments so beautifully and sensitively.