Well, it has happened. I am on the other side. I actually delivered the baby. Nearly a week late, but she is here. When you click off day after day post due-date, you wonder if it's ever going to happen. Your mind plays tricks on you and you truly begin to believe that you are going to be eternally pregnant. But that's impossible (thank goodness) and it has happened and I am done. The birth story will have to be told on the blog another day.
Currently she is asleep on Jimmy's chest while we enjoy the solitude of the hospital for a final night. Although I would prefer my own bed, I am soaking up the quiet and lack of children and questions and chaos of our normal world.
The chaos of our kids descended yesterday and they were all SO excited to meet their new baby sister. Juliet got to hold her first, since Juliet was a big sister for the first time. She was very excited but the best part of Juliet to me was when she asked me to hold her. She has missed my lap and my ability to hold her against my chest these last few months. We happily had a lap reunion in my hospital bed.
The rest of the children held her, youngest to oldest. They also brought me endearing notes and flowers. They had mismatched clothes, dirty faces, and messy hair. I loved it. It was all just as it should be. My wonderful dad had been waiting on me (for six days!) to have the baby so he could be THE ONE and be there for my kids while mom, Jimmy, and I were in labor. I appreciated his willingness to wait and then be an amazing Pop-Pop. Nice clothes and clean faces are totally optional.
Today Jimmy was looking back at some old photos of our last two babies, to compare the looks of these last three. Trying to see who looked like who. Because of this, I came across some old photos of our kids, some of me pregnant with previous children...and the immense happiness and blessing I felt was almost overwhelming. (I am, after all, post partem and thus emotional now.) My children are healthy, wonderful, amazing, and they just keep being more fun, more exciting, and more full of life every day.
This pregnancy was not fun, exciting, wonderful, or amazing. It was challenging, hard, and miserable at times. Yet God kept reminding me that I was full of joy. (Psalm 16) I had a life inside me. I was literally filled with joy. I knew this, but because of the difficulties I felt this joy was cloaked in uncertainty, obstacles, and pain. Cloaked in suffering, but still one hundred percent joy.
So her name is Violet Joy. Violet is an interesting color. It covers a range of emotions. It is not a color clear in message. But it is now. Because Joy has a color. And her name is Violet.