On March 2, a baby girl was born. Half a country away, we stayed up very late–scrambling around the house, throwing things into suitcases, making phone calls, and trying to still our shaking hands and keep our hearts from hoping too much. IMG_7815 About fifteen wrenchingly anxious hours later, we walked into a hospital room, exhausted and terrified, and saw her for the first time. A tiny, sleeping bundle; a swirl of dark hair. The world stood still. IMG_7817 A few minutes later, I gathered her in my arms. Warmth and weight, and tiny steady breaths. I had forgotten what it was like when a baby breathed. I tried to keep breathing, too. IMG_7846 Two days later, one of the bravest and funniest and loveliest women I have ever known signed a set of papers and handed that baby to me again. There were tears and promises, and she was ours: our daughter. IMG_7855 Our nickname for her is Petunia, and that’s what I plan to call her on the blog: Baby Petunia. It’s not her real name, but I feel more comfortable keeping my baby’s name a bit more private on the internet for now. IMG_7870 She is treasured and adored. Her brothers and sister clamor to talk to her, hug her, kiss her silky cheeks, and wonder at her tiny toes. Mama and Daddy have been drinking in the baby snuggles and toothless smiles and even a few giggles for two months now. Drinking them in, that is, as much as possible when you are reeling with sleep-deprivation and no one has any clean clothes to wear. But that’s part of the deal, isn’t it? We want babies to stay sweet and small forever–but we need them to grow up a bit so we can sleep again. We want to remember every detail, but it’s hard to remember much, including your children’s names or which direction is up, on four hours of sleep a night. So pictures are priceless. Because when the fog clears (someday) I want to remember this: IMG_7904                                                       Baby Petunia at almost three weeks old.

I am overjoyed to introduce our daughter. Welcome to the world, sweet girl.