#2,856 Things I’ve Relished.
by Erin Napier
We’ve had several months of the sweetest secrecy and radio silence about the most important thing that’s ever happened to us. I’ve relished so much about it, but most of all, the way Ben has been caring for Helen and me every minute of every day.
From the moment we found out, he’s been so conscious of my every move—so cautious. As it turns out, I do have a condition that puts me at risk for pre-term labor, and his awareness of this has made him into the sweetest protector. He holds my hand, always. He helps me into and out of the tub, tucks an extra pillow under the covers for me to sleep on my side more comfortably, the long talks with her at bedtime, making sure I remember the vitamin every day, bringing me cold water to make sure I’m drinking more, surprising me with fancy grilled cheeses for dinner, laying on the porch swing with me, rocking it gently till we fall asleep and the baby stops her kicking, sitting with me patiently and hugging me tight, smiling through my tears telling me everything is fine and that he loves me when I’m blindsided by these irrational, hormonal crying jags of which I’ve never experienced anything like in my life.
This Mother’s Day, I had known I would be a mother for 3 hours before I proudly accepted my rose in the church service, unembarrassed to stand for the first time ever.
Big never leaves me alone, because he knows—this has been my greatest fear my entire life, pregnancy, but now that it’s here, it’s turned out to be the sweetest months of our entire relationship. When I think of the way we’ve been insulating ourselves since we found out in May, I think of animals burrowing for the winter together. There is so much more I’ve loved about these months alone, that I’ll keep saved in the private memory of this season of life. We stay within arm’s reach, always. And that’s how we’re happiest. For a few more months I’m carrying him with me wherever I go, and I think that’s what I will love most about our daughter and miss most about pregnancy. That she is 50% him: his goodness, his thoughtfulness, and I hope that has rubbed off on me too a little.
I don’t know how I could love him more, but they tell me that’s what will happen when she finally comes. How will my heart take all that love at once?
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I’m Erin Napier, co-owner of Laurel Mercantile Co. and Scotsman Co. with my husband, Ben. I’m an artist and he’s a craftsman and we help people moving to our town find and restore old houses on HGTV’s Home Town. In an effort to count my blessings, this journal has documented only the good things that happen on each and every day of my life since January 1, 2010. I am a wife, a daughter, a homebody, a bubble bath lover, a book reader, a sentimental, stressed out, slightly obsessive southerner. Welcome!