Sunday, January 13, 2013

This Road We're On

Something was in the air last night.

As I put Kaiya to bed, she mentioned a girl on her bus who hadn't been on her bus all week. I said, "Well, you know... it's only a week into school. Maybe her family hasn't come back from their Christmas holidays yet. Or, maybe her family has gone back to their home country." She paused on this, sucking her thumb, thinking it over. "Actually," she said, using one of her favourite words,  "Before the holidays we had an assembly and a lot of kids stood up and the teachers said those kids weren't coming back after the holidays. And she was one of the ones that stood up." And I said, "Well, there you go. So she's gone back to her home country." Kaiya continued to suck her thumb and mull it over. I said, "You know hon, one day we're going to go back to Canada too." She said, "I know. We'll go back for more holidays." And I said, "No, I mean, one day we'll go back to Canada forever."

I didn't expect what came next.

Kaiya crumpled into my arms, crying and crying. That pitiful, sad little girl wail. "No. I don't want to do that! I don't ever ever want to do that! I would miss my friends too much!!" And I hugged her, not quite knowing what to say. "It's okay, hon. We don't have to talk about it tonight." And she said, "But I don't ever ever want to do that... not ever!" I hugged her some more and said, "But I don't understand. When people ask you, you always say that you like Canada more than Qatar." And she answered, "Yes, but I like them both!"

A year ago, I was guilt-ridden for Kaiya, constantly wondering if we had made the wrong choice; wondering if she would adjust, if she could ever feel like Qatar was home. It seems she has made the shift, without me even noticing.

Mind you, it also seems she's been crying a lot more easily these past few days. Perhaps she sensing the other shift soon headed our way...

And then, as I slipped into bed last night, I realized I had hardly felt the baby move all day. The baby who usually wears me down with its many rapid movements, causing me sometimes to bend over or wince in pain. A panic swiftly descended, and I could hardly mask my worry as I asked Jeff to bring me a sugary drink. My usually cool husband didn't hesitate, running down the stairs and coming back with sweetened mango juice and even Oreos, just for good measure. I sucked back the juice, and we waited, Jeff's hand on my belly, waiting for a sign. Before the last gulp went down my throat, the baby was hiccupping, and hard. Jeff laughed. But I was still unnerved. Long after he fell asleep, I lay there, wondering why my usually night-active babe was so still, so quiet. All night it went like this, sleep eluding me once again. In the morning, after putting Kaiya on the bus, I slipped back into bed, exhausted but determined, armed with sugary tea and those uneaten Oreos. Within minutes, there she was, kicking and moving all over the place. I texted Jeff. He responded immediately, relieved, admitting he had still been feeling the worry this morning.

It was a reminder to both of us. The naivety we had when I was pregnant with Kaiya is long gone. We are fully aware of the fragility of pregnancy and of the miracle of life this time.

We just want to meet her, hold her, and know that she's okay.

A wide expanse is opening up before us. The road stretches ahead, and we don't know, none of us, what it's going to look like. We're all in full waiting mode, a little anxious, a little excited, a little unsure.

Godspeed, baby Epp. We look forward to meeting you.

(Photos by Jeff, taken from a bumpy trip we took to Zekreet with Robyn when she was visiting, and I was 35 weeks pregnant.)


Suzanne said...

How do I even begin. You're incredibly articulate words, accompanied by the breath-taking photos, coupled with emotion and excitement. Amazing post Kathy. Such an incredible amount of unknown in your future, in our future. May we take comfort in knowing that we are together, no matter how many miles are between us. Love you and waiting on baited breathe for the news of baby Epp.

Erika said...

we worry about our kids often without any real need. how many things do you remember from when you were four or five? i went through huge changes and yet i don't remember; but then again it might just be me:-) parents do what's best for them and the children follow. not until later does it really matter.

we are all looking forward to meeting this beautiful new baby. together we wait patiently! love you!

thanks for some great reflections.

Cheryl@OntheOldPath said...

I look forward to seeing pictures of the newest Epp. It is so true that life is so uncertain, as fearful as it can be at times it is also a gift to know that things can change in the blink of an eye. It brings you to place where you can treasure each moment, to praise Him for the time we have... Blessings to you and all of yours! Praying for a peaceful delivery!

mariaborito said...

Godspeed! I was thinking of you today, thinking, "Kath is going to have a baby soon! Can't wait to meet her!"

Anonymous said...

Professionally written article, and first class photos

Anonymous said...

Another masterpiece