It's only a matter of weeks before our Tenacious Trio becomes a Fabulous Foursome. Honestly, I can't wait. Neither can they. Emotions are running high, mostly excitement. Though I confess, there's more than a little anxiety on my part.
You'd think after four kids, this would be old hat, and in some ways it is. I knew the importance of freezer meals this time around, and I got them baked and roasted and stored away. I know what kinds of diapers I'll be using and how many onesies I need in the drawer (already laundered and folded, thank you very much).
But, really, no matter how many children you have, birth is birth. By nature, it's always new. It's always thrilling. It's always nerve-wracking. It's always a mystery and miracle. Every. Single. Time.
This realization, of course, makes me giddy. It also makes me want to seize some modicum of control over what will, inevitably, be uncontrollable. I've been an artist long enough to know that the creative process is never cut and dry, never black and white. That's, after all, part of what makes it so beautiful. But no one ever said unpredictability was easy...especially for control-freaks like me.
So, what's an expecting Mama to do? Spot clean the couches? Dust the ceilings?
For one thing, I'm far too big these days. I need rest--I need sleep now, and I know it. No matter what surprises this new life brings, there is one thing I can count on:
I'm about to get really, seriously, no-holds-barred exhausted. So rest now is essential. Not the easiest thing to convince my racing brain of, but there it is.
So, I decided, it's time to relax. Start that process of drawing inward and calming down now. It won't seem like such a shock when the baby does come, and in a way, we'll be ready.
This weekend? After running a few quick and necessary errands (hey, you can't be restful and responsible all the time), I taught the kids to finger-knit. I can already tell this new skill is going to come in handy when I'm busy nursing a fussy newborn.
More importantly, though, it served as a way to focus their spirits, all that expectant-sibling energy put to good use. The knitting gave them a sense of purpose, a sense of calm, and yes, a sense of control that has been sorely needed by everyone in our home as we await these last anticipatory weeks.
So there you have it, this soon-to-be Mama of Four's best advice on preparing for birth: knit. No, just kidding.
The point is: REST.