Brother and Belly

Well, I did it again.

It was only a matter of time. I’m pregnant. My mind is clouded like a rainy day, and I simply can’t manage multiple things at once.

Up until now, I’ve been much kinder to my kitchen this go-around. In fact, Ryan has broken much more than I have. I’ve left my glasses unscathed.

If only my pots could say the same.

Quinoa smoldered to the belly of the pan. Need I say more?

This pregnancy has been different – far less hilarity and glow, far more exhaustion and bodily decay. The two brothers have made their intentions crystal clear – they plan on wearing me down daily. But there’s a glimmer of hope in watching Bronson process his pending brother.

I can’t remember exactly when Bronson first noticed my belly, but when he did, he immediately declared his affinity for it. “Ball,” he named it. Upon lifting my shirt, he was surprised to find my belly button, not his basketball. He loved my belly though because anything spherical is his soul mate.

He believed my belly button had a name – Oliver. When I would ask him where Oliver was, he would lift my shirt to show me. Then he would lift his own shirt and quizzically consider if he had an Oliver as well. No ball, but belly button. What a mystery!

He saw Oliver on the sonogram screens. He laid next to me, and held up his finger in disgust when he touched the cold, wet jelly.

Eventually, he began to understand that there was some mysterious correlation between this so-called Oliver and the small babies of other moms.  Now when I mention Oliver, he crisscrosses his arms, hugs himself and sways back and forth. It’s clear he plans on nurturing his little brother to be.

It’s also clear I’ll have to pay close attention. For the last few days he’s carried around a doll pretending it’s his younger sibling. Yesterday, the doll went skateboarding.

A few days ago, Bronson lifted my shirt to kiss Oliver. In response, Oliver flipped over. Bronson’s face was a combition of surprise, terror and disgust. He promptly pulled my shirt back over my belly. This Oliver thing had become too weird for him.

And who could blame him? It’s one crazy mystery to grow a baby in my belly. It’s even more mysterious to watch a first time brother try to understand.

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