Loving Moms and Being Moms

“Do you want to go out for supper?” I’m asked.
I don’t, actually. The restaurants will be packed and we might not be lucky enough to get a table at the place I’d prefer to go. But you know what would be a treat for me? Greek Ribs from there, takeout. I hate eating ribs in public anyway; they’re too messy.
So that’s what I’m looking forward to in the way of being celebrated today.

I had just gotten out of bed and not had even one sip of coffee when I was invited along for brunch in Kelvington with Scott’s mom, and then a visit to his grandmother (at age 108, it’s looking like she’ll be around forever!) at the nursing home. It was either rush to get ready and leave Emil here alone, still asleep, or decline and have a lazy, relaxed morning (like most all my mornings nowadays, come to think of it).

So here I am and Scott’s gone and I started digging through old photos for some memories to post for friends on FB who knew Mom. (You’re welcome to join me on FB at https://www.facebook.com/blondi.blathers )

GRACE and KATHY 1960147

Me and my ma. I was a year old here, and Mom was 18.

And then I thought I’d post a couple of myself as a brand-new mom, something I often, literally, thank my body for. I am so grateful. First, that my very early premature babies survived and were, other than being so tiny, healthy; second, that they were such sweet, happy babies; and third, that the gift of motherhood opened my heart. Now I’m a bloody softie.

EMIL and KATHY 1988

1988. Emil is 5 weeks old and four-and-a-half pounds. This is the day he came home from the hospital in Saskatoon.

I was so happy that day! For five weeks no one but me, Gord, and my parents had been permitted to visit Emil in the hospital. So the first thing I did was bundle him up (looked like I was carrying a football in a blanket, my friend Cathy said when I took him by her workplace; I think I actually had him under my arm!) and make a few visits.

SUZE and EMIL 1988151

My friend Joanne’s little girl Suze was thrilled to hold him. She still reminds me that he was smaller than her Cabbage Patch dolls. Now she’s the excellent mother of two small children herself. “And the seasons, they go round and round … .” (Joni Mitchell)

While Emil had been born 10 weeks early and weighed only three-and-a-half pounds at birth, Everett was a big bruiser, born only 8 weeks early and weighing just over four pounds. While Emil had had to be fed through a tube for some time and I wasn’t even permitted to hold him in my arms for two weeks (until I had a hissy fit with tears and a doctor took pity on me), Everett could come out of the incubator/isolette and nurse right away. He too stayed in hospital for five weeks, till his weight was up and staying up.

EVERETT and KATHY 1992

I don’t miss changing diapers and being awakened throughout the night, but the years of raising these kids were the happiest I’ve ever been.

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10 thoughts on “Loving Moms and Being Moms

  1. Being a mom was by far the best thing that ever happened to me. My kids are 19 & 21 and I miss the days when they were little.

    Love the baby pictures!

  2. Birdie,
    We’re looking forward to a grandbaby this September … some say being a grandparent is even better than being a parent. I find that hard to believe, but those who’ve been there before us know what they’re talking about, right? And I remember when Emil was only weeks old and I was totally smitten, realizing that my mother must’ve felt the same way about me. -Kate

  3. So tiny, really both of them. It must have been frightening for you. xxx

    Weren’t you the lovely mommy.

  4. your story reminded me of when I was in hospital after Sarah was born, and complications kept us in there for a month. I was the only nursing mother, and would be “milked” for the babies who were still in incubators or who were not responding well to their formula. It was a German hospital and they brought me beer a couple of times a day (good for the natural milk) but they had no milk for patients. I drank orangeade or lemon crush all that time. Strange time.

  5. Lorna,
    Thanks for the reminder of the breast pumps I had to use several times a day for Emil. I barely got a dribble and it was so frustrating; we supplemented his feeds with breastmilk from other mothers who had lots. There was no problem once he was big and strong enough to nurse, but in the meantime — pump pump pump in a special room with the other mothers of preemies. With my second baby I was an old hand and was one of the moms able to donate for other babies. -Kate

  6. Marms,
    When your first one’s a preemie, you don’t know what you’re in for and you let the medical personnel lead the way. It was overwhelming though, for sure. When your second one’s a preemie, you’re a lot more confident in your own knowing and you don’t let the nurses and docs make all the decisions. Mothering is empowering! -Kate

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