Happy Birthday Dear Squiggles

3 04 2008

Let’s get caught up to speed here. When last we heard about baby Squiggles, she was in utero, wreaking hormonal havoc on mommy dearest, turning me in to a waddling, wallowing mess of a woman. Well, she’s enjoying life on the outside now. In fact, she’s four months old today.So now, for a stroll down memory lane to the day when baby Squiggles became a part of our family rather than just a part of my belly. 

Baby Squiggles was almost named Eliza. Eliza Dawn. Had she been born any earlier, she probably would have been even though there was something deep inside me that knew the name was just not right. Perhaps it was the everything-old-is-new-again trendiness of it. Perhaps it was my mother saying “ Eeeliiiiiza Daaaawn” is a mock southern drawl one too many times. Or maybe it was the nicknames. Ellie (think phant.) Liza (think Manelli) E (think drugged out club kids.) Za (think pizza.) Ick, ick, ick and yum. No offence meant to any Elizas, Ellies, Liza or Es out there, and I have much love for za, but the name Eliza just did not seem like it belonged to a daughter of mine. It was too delicate, too demure, too frilly. But up until the three days before she was born, it was all we had. 

On December 1st, five days before my due date, and weeks after the point at which I figured this kid should have been out already, I had an epiphany. I love epiphanies. So I talked to my unborn babe. We made a secret deal. If she would kindly be born this weekend, she could have the name I’d taken off the table many months ago because it had been our first choice for a baby that never was. Two months before I got pregnant with Squiggles, I had a miscarriage. A name had jumped to my husband’s mind when we first found out I was pregnant that time around, and it was a name that we both loved. But it was silently removed from our list of considerations after we lost that pregnancy, and never brought up again. Until me and Squiggles cut our deal. And at 2 a.m on the day before her birth, as I stared out the window at the descending late fall snow storm, the baby and I sealed it with a middle name. Macie Jenevieve. And bada bing, I went in to labour. Macie, it turned out, was a medieval form of Matthew, my husband’s name. Jenevieve meant white wave, a sort of tribute to my grandmother Blanche, and to the blizzard that began on the night before her birth and raged on for…well, pretty much the next four months it seemed. 

At 2 p.m on December 2nd, we arrived at the hospital. Then the waiting began. Waiting for the contractions to get stronger and closer. Waiting for a Labour and Delivery room. Waiting for my doctor to come break my water. Waiting for an epidural. Waiting for a sign that everything would be all right. Waiting for my baby. Around supper time, I got my room. Finally, a place I could kick back, relax, sniff my lavender oil and listen to Pearl Jam, and think. Among the many things on my mind, one was a sorrow from my youth that always came back to me in the early days of every December. It was the 16 year anniversary of my friend Alicia’s death. In my mind, I still talk to Alicia from time to time, and this was one of those times. There was a weird irony in me having a baby on the day she died and somehow, I just felt like she was with me. I chuckled to myself as I asked my dear dead friend for some spiritual reassurance that everything would go smoothly, that this birth experience would not be as dramatic and traumatic as my last. Then, my Labour and Delivery nurse popped in to introduce her self. Her name was Alicia. Message received, thanks. 

By 9 p.m I had my epidural, and by 11:30 I was ready to start pushing. At this point, we had a choice to make. Do I give’er, and try to have her born on December 2nd, or do we wait a few minutes and aim for December 3rd . The decision was an easy one. As much as I wanted this baby out, December 2nd is also the birthday of Brittney Spears. I’d waited this long. I could hang on a few more minutes. December 3rd also had another layer of meaningful coincidence and weirdish irony. It just happened to be the 10-year anniversary of the first time my husband and I hooked up. In the biblical sense. I know, I know, TMI…but hey, that’s what blogs are for. At ten minutes to midnight, I started pushing. At the stroke of midnight, baby Squiggles was born, and we have not had time to look back…until now, as she sits here in her rocking chair, hiccupping her little head off the way she did in my belly four short months ago.  Happy Birthday, Baby Squiggles.




4 responses

5 04 2008

Hi Amy,
I didn’t know you had a Blog!!!
Hell I didn’t even know how to Blog.
Well I LOVE IT!!
I too wish we had taken your picture….
I just read your birth story of Macie; it’s SO beautiful. I wish I could articulate myself the way you do. Writing is art!

9 04 2008

Amy, This is great stuff! You keep writing & I’ll keep reading. Deal?

9 04 2008


4 12 2008
Another Barfday « Domestic Blister

[…] Sticking rainbow balloons on the ceiling. Vacuuming dut-duts off the floor. Reminiscing about the night Squiggles was born. By the time Neener and Roo got home from school, we were ready for a few folks to swing by for a […]

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