Monday, May 30, 2011


Dear Helena,
Today you are just over 6 weeks old. You are very tall for your age and yesterday we met a little girl named Genevieve who was three months old and you could have shared clothes with her. You are going to be tall, like your mommy, and being tall rocks. I remember in high school, i could see over all the short girls in the bathroom mirror. I can’t imagine what you will be like when you go to high school, because right now you are my little peanut, you are sitting in your bouncy chair with your peaceful baby onesie on and you are just chilling, watching me type on the laptop. Dad turned the vibration on for your chair cause you like it, he calls it “your jigglies”.

This weekend is memorial day. Dad is home for 3 whole days and we are very excited. we are getting ready to go to Gay City State Park with lunch and your stroller. Your first picnic! We have been talking walks every morning, you and I, around the neighborhood, to the post office, doing little errands. We listened to NPR yesterday on my Ipod and you fell asleep within the first three minutes. I know, that is how I used to feel about NPR, too, but it grows on you. I remember all the times last year and the year before that i used to run around the neighborhood training for races, dreaming about you, praying for you. I would push myself to run and run and run a little bit further, a little bit faster, knowing that I could to it, knowing that running was hard work and waiting for you was also hard work but life is hard and it can’t be all daisy and lollipops all the time.

Yesterday auntie traci was here, she came to see you because she misses you so much now that she moved over an hour away. You had a grand old time with her, and I got to clean out the garage which i have wanted to do for a year. We went to whole foods for gelato which i could tell you wanted to taste, but you are too small yet, so I tried to hide mine so you wouldn’t feel bad. You smiled at us the whole time. when we were sitting at the cafe, a woman came up to us and said, “isn’t she just a treasure?” about you and I emphatically agreed, yes, she is, she really is such a sweet baby and we are so lucky to have her. it melts me when people say things like that, it’s like she could feel the energy we have for each other and she could tell that are just the center of my universe.

You have started to lift up you head lots now, and you can turn it from side to side at your whim. You have also started to recognize toys and things hanging off your car seat and your bouncy chair. You look at them and sometimes you smile at them. It will only be a short time before you start to realize that you have hands and you can reach out and touch them.

Update on the world: a few weeks ago, the United States Special Operations had killed Osama Bin Laden, who was responsible for the attack on the World Trade Center 11 years ago, that killed over 2000 people. I am sure you will learn about this in school, but us, we lived through it, what a dark time for the world and especially Americans.  Everyone blamed George Bush for attacking Iraq in the first place, saying they had weapons of mass destruction, which he never found, but instead caused such a senseless war.  some of our men and women are still over in Iraq and often I see people protesting the war on the side of the road with signs to “bring our soldiers home”. I can tell already, you won’t want any part of that.  You are such a lover and peaceful and sweet child. When the towers fell, your mom and dad had been dating for just a few months and we would sit around on the brown couches at Daddy’s apartment and watch the news every night, all night long, as they looked for survivors in the rubble. We just couldn’t believe what had happened.

Last night i put your to bed in your little bassinet at the foot of our big bed. you make a lot of noises while you are sleeping, grunts and coos and sometimes you clear your throat or suck on your hand and make little slurping noises.  you were particularly quiet for some time, so i thought you surely must be asleep, and i peeked down to the end of the bed and after my eyes adjusted to the darkness, i saw you, and your teeny little eyes, blinking back at me in the darkness. You are such a treasure, and i remember that every time I see your little eyes looking back at me.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

the Wedge

Dear Helena,
Today you are 18 days old. Time seems to move at a faster pace now that you are here with us. It’s speeding by and each day i notice how you have changed from the day before. your hair has grown out a little bit over the tops of your impossibly small ears and it makes you look so grown up.

You were born on a friday and the day before daddy and I were waiting to go to the hospital to have you because you were very comfy in mommy’s belly and you didn’t want to come out so we had to start the eviction process. i didn’t mind having you in there for the 8 days you were late, but we were very anxious to meet you and introduce ourselves and i wanted to know exactly who was kicking me in the bladder from the inside for all those months.

The moment you were born, i reached down and pulled you up onto my belly and you screamed and screamed and i thought it was the most amazing thing i have ever heard. You were blue when i first saw you and so very long, 22 inches to be exact and when i scooped you up and held you to my chest you spilled over on both sides of me. You are so beautiful and your cheeks and lips look just like your dads. Your father leaned over to look at you and he said he was so proud of us, so proud of his family. Grandma was there, too, and she said please tell us her name now, for the love of God please tell me her name, and i told her you were to be called Helena Raegan, after her mother, and she cried and I cried and of course you were crying but mostly because you were cold and wet and in a new place with bright lights and loud noises and crying people.

We kept your name a secret for all those months, just a little secret between me and your dad. You are named after Grandma’s  mother, Helen, who was a wonderful grandmother to me, and who sadly you will never meet until we all go to heaven. She was a tall, thin woman with white hair and finger curls and she always wore plaid skirts. She never wore pants, not one day of her life.  Raegan is a name we gave you to honor mommy’s best friend from college who is also in heaven and who mommy misses very much. When you are older I will tell you all about her. Lots of stories I will tell you. Some I won’t tell you until you are very grown up cause I don’t want to give you any ideas.

We have lots of nicknames for you so we hardly call you by your name. We mostly call you honker, smelly, cutie pie, baby doll, sweet pea, cute face, Cutie McCute Pants, tiny tot, little worm, squirmy and your dad likes to call you “the wedge”. He says it’s because you have wedged yourself right in-between us, but i really think it’s because you have wedged right into his heart and you already have him wrapped right around your chubby little finger.

Lately we have spent a lot of late nights together, me and you. For the first week you were here, when you would wake in the night, we would go in the guest room and I would nurse you and we would watch Season 4 of Sex and the City. You really like Aiden you told me, and you can’t understand why Carrie would act like such a bitch to him.  One night we watched Finding Nemo, and you really loved it. Just keep swimming, swimming swimming, you would say. You are such a sweet little baby, you are contended and gentle and you just fit into our lives as exactly the piece that was missing.

Last night was a rough night for us, me and you. Daddy went back to work yesterday so we tried to let him sleep as much as possible since he gets really crankypants when he’s tired. We were up all night long, you and me. You didn’t want to go back to sleep after each feeding, so we cuddled and rocked in the rocking chair in your room and I sang you Grateful Dead songs. When you finally fell asleep as the sun was coming up, I put you back in your basinette in our room and climbed into bed with daddy and after a few moments of settling in, you and your dad both started snoring. If you ever wanted to start a band, you guys would make a bitching horn section.

I am hugging you, kissing you and drinking you in, every moment of the day, you are the best thing I have ever done with my life.