Labor Dream

Six months ago, I gave birth to my second son. He was a healthy nine pound and one ounce baby (not breech!), about two weeks early. Big brother adores him, we all dote on him. He’s smiley, chubby, has one dimple and two teeth.

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“Labor Dream” 8×10 watercolor

My labor took a while to get going, and I became obsessed with timing contractions and finding ways to guess my dilation (this does not help anything). I just wanted to get to 10 centimeters dilation so that it would be over and I would be holding my baby. At some point I dozed off and had a dream where I saw a giraffe and the number 10. That giraffe- I recognized her. My family and I had a humorous encounter with a giraffe family at the zoo when my first son was very young. The giraffe pen contained a family of them with a mother, father, and baby. Mama giraffe was just trying to eat, and her kid giraffe was running circles around her, begging for her attention. The daddy giraffe was standing right exactly beside her, waiting (patiently) for some attention too. It seems that motherhood is exhausting for all species. We laughed at the situation and the poor mama. And in my dream, it was like she returned to remind me that it will be crazy, exhausting, irritating, happy and full, this mothering business; and I would not be lonely or alone very often.

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I did eventually get to 10 centimeters and now my arms are very full. It is true that I don’t get many moments to myself, which can be problematic for an artist. But I am getting over it. Good thing I know from experience that this doesn’t last forever. I hope to make one small painting a week. It is more about the practice than the content right now. That will come with practice.

Until next week,

Kathryn

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