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When I Am Sandwiched in Love

When I Am Sandwiched in Love

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I am lying in bed with my sick toddler.

I have never been against co-sleeping, but it was not something I actively pursued when she was a baby. Together with the fact that she didn’t nurse, this basically meant that co-sleeping was something we rarely did.

But after her consistent bouts of coughing woke us both up for the third time tonight, instead of simply calming her down again, I asked, “Do you want to come and sleep in Mummy’s bed?”

A very emphatic nod met these words. She reached out to me and I gathered her comfort blanket, her bottle and her doll, and we made the trek to the room next door to hers.She lies in the crook of my arm

A space was cleared and a pillow wedged between the wall and the bed, lest the existing gap widen too much.

And now she lies in the crook of my arm, her blonde curls touching my nose, her breathing slowing to a calm rhythm. Every so often, she looks up at me, and I see her eyes shining even in the darkness.

“Mummy?” It is a question, but a statement at the same time. Mummy is here, next to me, I am in her bed, and that is so wonderful and comfortable and warm and right.

As she drifts off, I think about a video I watched earlier, posted on a social media site. As viral videos tend to be, it was heartwarming, emotional and powerful, and probably very well-edited. And while I know that, I choose to look past the cynical side of it, and focus on the message it sent me and the feelings it evoked in me.

The video depicted a woman in labor in her home. The home was set up for a water birth, the birthing team all experienced in home deliveries. And while the idea of a home birth is not something I might agree with, the video touched a chord in me that only the miracle of birth can touch.

Maybe it’s because I’m pregnant myself. Maybe it’s because I’m an emotional and sensitive person. Maybe it’s simply because I’m a woman. But that four-minute intimate footage of a couple experiencing the last few hours of labor together had me crying copious tears. They were supporting each other, crying with each other, and then, at the end, welcoming a perfect little baby girl into the world amidst soft cries of relief and joy. The calmness of the pool of water, the background music, the soothing doula, the pain of the woman as she experienced each contraction . . . it was a sensual video in every sense of the word. I watched it three times, and cried each time.

In my pregnancy, there are times when I panic at the mystery of it all. It is hard for me to feel out of control, to realize that the fate of this baby is not in my hands. Her movements are more foreceful and frequentI know that there is Someone above pulling the strings, and it is He alone who decides whether my baby will be healthy, whether I will deliver full-term, whether complications will arise, whether I will get through the birth with ease. And it is times like these that I feel myself letting go. I feel myself releasing the worry and trusting in Him, giving Him full rein, because ultimately it is He who wants the best for me and this child.

Now, as my daughter sleeps peacefully in my arms, her little chest rising and falling, I feel her soon-to-be sibling squirming impatiently inside of me. Her kicks are getting stronger and stronger, her movements more forceful and frequent, her strength mounting as she grows ever larger inside of me.

Tears rise, unbidden, to my eyes, as I marvel at the love that surrounds me in this moment. One daughter lying alongside me, another precious soul learning new things each day inside of me. Soon, I know, very soon, the steadiness of a one-child family will change to the quickening pulse of two, and despite all the warnings of how this change will impact my life, I lie here and feel lucky. Blessed. Wonderful.

I feel sandwiched in love.

And I am grateful to Him.

Blumie Abend is a wife and mother currently living in Crown Heights. She has a passion for writing and currently works as a freelance writer.
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Jill Vialle Tasmania August 4, 2015

Beautifully expressed. We are truly blessed to be mothers. Jill Reply

Tanya Liverpool UK August 4, 2015

Our babies are so precious. I lost 7 little dreams but was finally blessed with 2 amazing boys, who are now 3 and 8. Thy are my world. Those nighttime snuggles are the most treasured and magical moments. All our children are miracles. Life sometimes gets in the way, and we can so easily take them for granted. But when I hold my boys close, I am overwhelmed by the depth and intensity of love and awe. Reply

Anonymous August 2, 2015

Beautiful I am in a similar situation and I feel so amazed how my love for my kids feels at once so intense and overpowering, that I almost fear that there won't be enough for yet another. Still in early stages so my new little one's only presence now is the beginning of a widening girth and my private gasps and gags at the smells that surround me as I battle "morning sickness"
What a blessing to be a mother! Reply

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