amm & Grandbaby

Nick and I found out we were expecting just two months after amm passed away. When she was first diagnosed and still in Saskatoon we shared our secret with her that we had started to take the steps to add to our family. Although she didn’t have many words left at that time, she had a special response for the two of us, so we knew she understood what we were telling her, and we even shared the name we had chosen if we were ever to have a girl.

She knows.

I will admit I was becoming a bit miffed with amm as I had truly, deep down in my heart, believed that she would show me signs that she was with me. But those first few months after she passed away, there was nothing. I told myself that she needed some time to settle into her new surroundings…but still!

It wasn’t until I started focusing on baby stuff when she began to send me little messages of comfort. It’s like she was waiting for the right time to let me know that she was still with me. I will use this page to document the little ‘hellos” amm has sent me and her Grandbaby.

  1. I was just over three months into my pregnancy and really needed to buy some clothes that were going to fit me. Nick and I went to a little maternity boutique in downtown Edmonton. I wouldn’t call it hoity toity, but it is definitely above the traditional chain maternity stores you would find in the mall. Even the music they played over their speakers was classier. I took a pile of clothes into the change room and right away I noticed that a new song was beginning. After the first few notes I knew the song and initially thought, “That’s  a weird song for this kind of store to be playing.” Then I made the connection. It was 500 Miles by the Proclaimers. A fav of amm and Anth played it at her Wear Your Red Celebration. I did really well not crying all over the expensive clothes I had in the change room with me. I just looked up and thought, “Thanks mom. Thanks for being with me for the first time I tried on maternity clothes.”
  2. A co-workers’ wife was sweet enough to offer to make me a nursing apron. She told me the fabric store to go to that she really likes and to pick out fabric that I like. I got to the store and found the section that she suggested looking at. Beautiful patterns and colours, but right next to this section, there was a full row of patterned fabric in red, white and black – standard amm colours. I quickly shifted my focus to this new shelf. Then again, I heard a new song come over the speakers – Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You from the Jersey Boys soundtrack.  It just happened to be a song that I played for amm while in the hospital almost everyday. At that point, I just started talking out loud to amm, discussing fabrics and asking for her opinion. There I was, standing in a corner of a fabric store, having a chat with my mom. We eventually agreed to stay away from the red, white and black, but chose a lovely lime green and white pattern with butterflies.
  3. Nick and I feel really lucky to have the obstetrician that will help us along this process. She comes highly recommended and we have since heard many wonderful things about her from other parents. We have only met her once so far, but in that meeting, amm said hi to us again. Dr. Tam sat in front of us and we began chatting. When there was a lull in the conversation as she was writing some notes, I leaned over to Nick and whispered, “Did you notice what she is wearing?” “No,” he replied. There on her fabric lanyard around her neck to hold her access swipe card, was a big, metal, gold butterfly broach.

Sunday, February 21, 2010 – amm would approve of the approach Nick and I are taking with this pregnancy and arrival of our little one. We have educated ourselves about the aspects of labour, especially focusing on the benefits of a natural delivery. Although we will understand and accept if things progress differently from what we would ideally like, we have asked the questions that needed answers to feel comfortable, empowered and supported in our decisions. One of the resources we have decided to help us with this path is to have a doula. I think the best way to describe a doula is someone who is truly passionate about birth and recognizing what an amazing and spiritual experience and shares their knowledge with other parents. They have professional training in prenatal, birth and postnatal stages and they provide support to you during these time. The doula that we are lucky enough to have with us is Pam Aloisio. A fellow former North Battlefordian who makes Nick and I feel so encouraged after meeting with her each time. I know amm would be thrilled with our decision, especially as one of her favourite books was The Red Tent, which focuses on midwifery and amm herself had natural childbirths, using hypnotherapy for her pain management. Please take a look at Pam’s website. We would recommend her in an instant!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

This weekend we were at a ranch near Bowden, Alberta for the Marchand Reunion. Earlier today I saw my first butterfly of the season. Just fluttering across the open field. Then later this afternoon Nick, Arrine and I were under our little camping canopy that we used to keep Arrine in the shade and away from the bugs. That’s when Arrine rolled over for the first time ever, from her back to her tummy. And Nick then pointed out, “Look, there’s a butterfly.” Sure enough, a black and white butterfly was under the canopy with the three of us.