Thursday, January 31, 2013

And Then We Became Four.

It's funny how fast your world can change. One night our bedroom was all colour-coordinated adult-sophistication, and now tonight here I sit surrounded by diapers, wipes, a tray of food, a bouquet of roses, a haphazardly placed glider, various healing remedies and ointments, far too many pillows, and - oh look - a sleeping baby.

I feel all groggy, hazy, not sure of the day or the time. My body is quite frankly a mess, with random and not so random soreness and plenty of parts that are, let's just say swelled to maternal perfection, and hormones that are starting to feel close to that turning point... you know, the one where I will swiftly become a weepy, clingy, "isn't-she-beautiful?" mess.

And it's all exactly where I want to be. I am now, after much longing, a mother of two. Two beautiful girls. A soft, fuzzy newborn and her big sister.

And how is big sister adjusting to her new role? Many have asked. I'll let Kaiya tell you herself, starting with this picture, taken when Kaiya and Isabelle first met:

I'd say she was at least as smitten as we were, wouldn't you?

And just to give you a fuller picture, here are a few of the other things she has said and done in just these first precious days...

On the way to visit us at the hospital...
Jeff: So the baby's name is Isabelle Ruth. But you can call her Izzy, for a nickname.
Kaiya: (thinking...) How about I call her Isa-bear? Just like Kaiya-bear. Then we can share the same nickname.

When Jeff and Kaiya arrived at the hospital, I had Isabelle in bed with me. Kaiya rushed to her side, already glowing, and gently kissed her hand. Then, bouncing in place, she immediately asked to hold her. The picture above is the sweet result.

On my first night home, Kaiya eagerly explained to me that Izzy can use her toddler bed, currently covered in stuffies, when she turns three. And then, when she gets older, she can share Kaiya's bed. Because really, her bed is too big for her. "And mom, when another baby comes, they can share my bed too." Um, ya... we'll talk about that another day, k?

Each morning she rushes in to find her little sister, usually eating or sleeping, and as I shush her or remind her to "be gentle" yet again, her five-year old energy bounces around the room, and she showers Isabelle with hugs, touches, and kisses. And when she gets off the bus in the afternoons, she zips in to find Izzy yet again. She likes rocking her in her little chair, giving us tips on how best to swaddle her, and diagnosing her crying fits... "Mom, I think she must be gassy again."

But the best thing Kaiya has said? At the hospital... "Having a sister is like having friends come play in your house every day!" Yes, honey, that's right. And that's what my momma heart has been longing for you all this time.

We're a family of four now. A family of four. Mom and Pop, big sister and baby. It really has happened. And we're settling in just fine.


Larissa said...

Beautiful, as always.

Fatima said...

This brought tears to my eyes Kathy it is everything I have ever wished or hoped for. You bring hope to so many. Congrats on your new bundle of joy. She is absolutely precious. We miss you. And, just remember to take in every moment cause I still can't believe how fast they grow. Love you all

Robyn said...

Kathy Epp!! (I have no Idea of your middle name but you need one b/c you're first and last name are short a few syllables for the melody of how I'm saying this to you. So picture said with at least four, kay?! ;) )

I had a little Robyn humour in there, sure to make you go huh? B/c I needed to compose myself a little for me to (hopefully) have this make sense.

I'm working afternoons today, so it's a glorious morning where I get to sip a cup of tea in bed while I read my daily list of blog entries. Most of the time said blogs are from people I've never met, with fewer and fewer reads from people who I actually know. I had just finished when up popped a fb notification saying that 'Epps in Qatar" had been updated. This combined with my daily thinking of you all, and my strong efforts to NOT call yet... made my stomach filp a little.

This post like the last have made me weep, smile and laugh. Aside from being a great writer that I can easily read and snuggle into the emotions on the page; are a great Mamma! I am thrilled for you and that heart of yours. I am thrilled for the four of you and what this means to being an Epp. And I'm thrilled that your daughters will have the opportunity to read these moments in years to come.

Keep these a comin'. Kay?!

Love you all!

Suzanne said...

This made my heart swell. What a journey it has been to bring you to being a family of four. Four! Absolutely amazing. I can only imagine Kaiya's excitement around baby Izzy and that picture tells it all. So beautiful. Thanks for keeping us all in the loop. It means the world!

Anonymous said...

Happiness is looking at this picture of our two grand daughters.Babi and Dedo

Erika said...

thanks; so wonderful! the picture does tell it all!

mariaborito said...

Tears! Smiles! Love your descriptives of the bed room! The bed. Life revolves around this room for the first while:) I am so happy for you. I love how Kaiya is embracing it all. Her heart is exploding with joy and having someone to share her life with is so exciting!
Thanks for sharing these precious moments with us.

Tarasview said...

lovely :)

You describe the first few days with a new baby so very well, it brought me right back! I wish you all peaceful sleep and much happiness in the days to come!