2021 Highlights: Week 5

  • Exploring new trails.
  • The way little kids enjoy their own reflections. They just enjoy looking at themselves without vanity or shame and it’s wonderful to observe.
  • Various hate groups (including one particularly famous one right now) being labelled as terrorist groups by the Canadian government.
  • A long walk on a sunny day, including a visit to the library, some time at a park, and a couple of treats along the way. Rose and I spend every day together but we decided to call this outing a date anyway.
  • Time spent in the garden. This week I pruned rose bushes and turned over garden beds while Rose played and then rushed to pick up Pearl from school, still in my muddy gardening pants.

Our (initially) 2 week lockdown that began November 7th has been extended, again, this time “until further notice”. Last week marked a year since I’ve been in the city of Vancouver. The longest I’ve ever gone without setting foot in Vancouver since I moved there as a kid.

This weekend also marks 6 years since the afternoon I cried in our car in the parking lot outside the fetal diagnostic centre at Women’s Hospital in Vancouver. I was 35 weeks pregnant and had gone in for an ultrasound to check on baby’s kidneys. I left with a diagnosis of a heart defect, a term written down on a piece of paper with the doctor’s warning, “Don’t Google this”. That memory is still so vivid to me – sitting in the passenger seat of our old 4Runner, the rain pouring down, Peter and I deciding if we could pull ourselves together to make the next ferry home. I think I’ve cried like that twice in my life and the second time was four long weeks later when I held Pearl in my arms after her first appointment with the cardiologist. Six years later, I realize how much my experiences in pregnancy have shaped my role as a mom. Sometimes, when I find myself being impatient with my kids or wishing the long days away, I try and stop and remember that moment, remember how much I prayed for the privilege of these hard days, what an answer to prayer these girls’ lives are.

9 thoughts on “2021 Highlights: Week 5”

  1. I’m really enjoying this series of updates. It’s a great way to keep up with you all when we can’t be together in person! It’s like a scrapbook and you know I love that! It’s been so strange to notice the ‘milestones’ similar to your comment about Vancouver. I think this might be our longest stretch without seeing you? Certainly since having kids and perhaps the whole 10+ years…

    1. You’re right, it probably is the longest stretch. Definitely since having kids! Though it also made me realize that the time since I moved away from Vancouver is longer than the years I lived in Vancouver so that made me feel kind of old!

  2. Two books that made think more about pregnancy and what it means to have fertility struggles or miscarriage were Dear Girls by Ali Wong and Kid Gloves by Lucy Knisley. Kid Gloves was especially informative and really demonstrated how a mother might feel alone, sad, like a failure, or struggle. Wong’s book gets a big ranchy later, but she discusses having a miscarriage and what it was like to get pregnant and be afraid, and then later to remember her pregnancy fears when he girls are older.

    1. That struck me in Wong’s book too when I read it, the way she talked about the fear in pregnancy once you’ve had a miscarriage. It’s not something I’ve seen discussed much but she really captured a lot of my own feelings. I think especially when a woman’s first pregnancy ends in miscarriage, it’s hard to navigate subsequent pregnancies without fear. But it does also colour how I view my kids now, though I know most people view their kids as miracles! Sometimes I still feel amazed that so many people are born healthy and without incident when there are so many things that can go wrong. Like, we’re really all very miraculous!

    2. Oh, you’re read it! Nice! There are some people who seemed to get pregnant all the time. I remember watching bits of that shoe Roseanne. When their kids are quite older, they decide the want another baby, and it’s not happening. I distinctly remember Roseanne say, “We used to get pregnant sharing the same soap!” as a way to express how easy it used to me.

    3. I’m pretty sure I read it because of your review!

      We have friends who describe it as he sneezes and she gets pregnant! I think also pregnancy prevention is so drilled into teenagers that it seems like all you have to do is stand too close and you’ll get pregnant!

  3. Lovely highlights! In a few days, it will be a year since I was anywhere other than my own town, which will be strange, as I used to travel fairly regularly for work within the UK. These milestones are a strange experience, but at least now that the vaccine is here they are milestones on the way towards a light at the end of the tunnel 🙂

    1. It definitely feels strange. My town is pretty small so going into the city for shopping and movies etc. Plus my family all lives in the city. But you have to take a ferry to get there so it counts now as non-essential travel so we’ve done our best to avoid it but it is very unusual to go this long without a visit. And yes, the vaccine is a lovely milestone to look forward to!

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