Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Rose Sharon

Rose Sharon Allison
September 21, 2018
12:33 PM
8 lbs., 12 oz.

Yes, she is almost five months old. And yes, I know this is the first mention I've made of her on here. But it's only because she is so very wonderful and cuddly and a wee bit demanding and fits into this family perfectly. Which is to say, my days are very, very, very, very full.

In the best sort of way, of course!

Her actual birth was … forgettable, to be frank. And, might I add, that is the best kind of birth to have. I was not traumatized from it, there were no lingering complications, and I cannot for the life of me remember the details of the birth as much as I can remember the obligatory post-birth Outback Steakhouse steak, which we devoured in the hospital room with the REAL SILVERWARE we remembered to pack from the house! (Eating an Outback steak with a plastic fork is a definite downer.)

I do remember the day before, however. My water had broken the night before, on Wednesday. Thursday I announced, "Today we walk! We will have this baby!" and Ethan and I left the Older Children in charge with plenty to eat and went walking. We started at the Star Trail, and then walked the Verona Trail, and then we headed down the road to try BBQ at a campground we had heard recommended from a man in line at another BBQ joint. This is the campground with a million pet rabbits who ate the pieces of bun I threw at them. This is also the campground where our GPS took leave of its senses.

After the brief lunch, we headed up the mountains, past a freshly dead timber rattlesnake, to hike part of the Appalachian Trail, which we did.

There were a few overnight hikers who were excitedly starting their hikes from our trail, and we quickly moved to the side while they laughed and sang out and hiked their packs higher on their backs. I hiked my belly up and declared, "This is probably enough of this" and turned back to head back to the car. It took us about two minutes to make it back to the parking lot. Does that count as hiking? It is probably more correct to say I set foot on the Appalachian Trail that day.

Then we walked around the Humpback Rocks Farm and imagined trying to do things with our family way back when -- laundry washing and drying, raising all our own food, making all our own hard cider. My life was looking decidedly easier.

It was a beautiful day. It was a wonderful, long, leisurely, special date. It will be forever implanted (I hope) in my mind -- it is rare that I "live in the moment" -- but I was so fully aware of the fact that our family was about to change, and my normal pre-birth fears and sense of overwhelm were being successfully suppressed by the knowledge that this, too, would pass, and a wonderful family awaited this newest one and would do above and beyond what I needed.

We continued to find little places to pull over and admire God's creation, marveling at the many butterflies and the vulture airing its wings on a rock overlooking the ranges of mountains. It was spectacular. And I kept thinking, "God made all of this! It all declares His glory! And so, Little One, will you! And that is just incredible."

And the next day, when the contractions were hard and strong, we headed to the hospital. Of course, there was not a single contraction the whole way there, so we turned around in the parking lot and headed to the Star Trail to walk some more. We walked, and then we headed to Aldi's for easy foods for the kids and then drove home, and then we decided to wait until the regularly scheduled doctor's appointment at 11:30. At the appointment, the doctor and nurse were making bets as to how far along I was. The doctor said a 6, the nurse said a 4, and Ethan said an 8. He was closest, of course. I was at a 9, so they sent me over to the hospital; and I honestly remember very little after that, until hearing, "It's a girl!"

Ethan had put his order in for another girl. She fits the bill beautifully. She twists my hair around her fists while she nurses, and she squawks her opinions loudly, and she has the best whole-face smile in the world.

She has these gorgeous, dark, intense brown eyes and looks exactly like Lily (15) did at that age. It's so wonderful to hold a mini-Lily! My two flower-girls -- Lily and Rose -- most certainly belong together.

And so do all the rest of them. The Lord has most certainly hedged me behind and before, and laid His hand upon me (Ps. 139:5). And I am so very thankful, and my days are so very full, and it is all so very, very good.
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