I strolled into Home Depot with my checklist scribbled into the notes section of my iPhone. Maisley sat in the front of the cart, casually along for the ride and intentionally preoccupied by her Trader Joes cheddar rocket snacks.
I’m never above asking for help in that giant store, so I flagged down the first orange vest in site. “Excuse me. Are you able to tell me where I can find a cheap garden hose, a sprocket to attach the hose to a bathroom sink, large storage bins and two smoke detectors?” I asked casually, without explaining why.
I felt like I was plotting for something big. Like I was an incognito, athleisure-wearing, mom-version of Walter White from Breaking Bad gathering supplies for some illegal debauchery.
Substitute the meth for some oxytocin, and our new home and home birth prep was underway.
The Home Part
After a year of searching, the magical combo finally struck at week 32 of pregnancy number two – we fell in love with a new home and our offer was accepted. A home still in San Diego county, but just far enough away to bring out waves of that uncomfortable feeling that happens with big changes or when you’re just about to take off on an airplane to somewhere unknown. A new grocery story, new network of friends and new everyday life.
Maisley will finally have walls on her room and Ryan and I won’t have to use our bluetooth headphones to watch TV together at night. We will have a backyard where our kids can expel their endless energy and most importantly, our own mailbox in which I can paint in any way I please (a dream I have always had).
Despite everything that feels right about our new home, it feels bittersweet to leave our town home – the first home we bought together and the only one Maisley has ever known. It’s only been three years, but three big years of growth and change from newlyweds to parents of almost two.
Nestled into the middle of my third trimester, I think I’ve actually been relatively useful during the moving process. My pointer finger is stronger than ever and new directives are popping into my vocabulary everyday. Only time will tell if I am still married after our move-in date and furniture assembly.
The Birth Part
Nothing like welcoming ourselves to a new neighborhood with a home birth. Placenta cookies anyone?
After having an unmedicated hospital birth with Maisley, our first daughter, I was pretty set on trying for a similar process with our next daughter, “sissy” (despite the intense memories of labor that still make my stomach churn with anxious butterflies). But a planned home birth was never really in the plans. It always seemed a little too “crunchy” and out there. Was it even safe?
As it turns out, choosing to do a home birth wasn’t really something I chose. It was a feeling, an inkling, a deep sense of curiosity that slowly bubbled to the surface during my first few weeks of pregnancy. I think she chose it.
We went about the process of interviewing midwives to educate ourselves and see if this new type of care felt right. We found someone that we loved and were 90% certain about our decision – the last 10% was made on a leap and a prayer.
This new form of prenatal care has been empowering, informative and full of research. Everyday fluctuates between excitement and fear about sissy’s birth, but I can’t wait to hold her and see how her birth day will unfold.
Ryan will be the tub setter-upper. A lot of people ask about the tub. Will she be born in the water? Where will it go? Does it have a recirc pump to keep the water warm? (per my handy-man Uncle). If I’m feeling it in the moment, master bedroom and yes.
While I’m overwhelmed and sometimes panicked about the weeks ahead, my gratitude level is simultaneously peaking. Change has a special way of making me feel alive.
That and boxes. So many boxes, which unlike birth, won’t be spontaneously unfolding on their own.