Because I know I failed to inherit my mother's thank you note gene, I'm hoping that publicly acknowledging the people who have helped me out over the last few weeks will be at least a halfway acceptable form of expressing my gratitude. Plus it's always fun to play Academy Award Acceptance Speech, isn't it?
First off, and above all, I need to formally thank The Admiral. Not just because he, quite literally, helped bring this baby into the world, but because his support and very active assistance made having a homebirth possible. He overcame many of his own reservations and put his trust in my body and the skills of our midwives. Without that, I may have had a perfectly happy, healthy baby, but I never would have succeeded in reaching the goal of a perfectly happy, healthy birth.
Running a close second to The Admiral as far as making this experience possible is, of course, Cha Cha. Being a normal mom, she also had her concerns about her daughter giving birth in a non-hospital setting. Being my mom, she managed to suppress most vocal demonstrations of her worries. I still knew they were there, though, so it meant all the more to hear her say how moved she was by being present for this birth, and that she had been completely converted to the homebirth ideal. And that doesn't even begin to cover the three weeks that she spent entertaining a very, very active three-year-old during one of the tensest periods of our family's life. I knew she could tolerate the various philosophical whims of her daughters, but now we also know that the woman has infinite patience for Play-Doh parties and rock-picking expeditions.
And, well ... I don't have the words to thank Amy and Andrea. I just don't. I hope seeing me bouncing around ten days after an incredibly difficult labor shows them how much they did for me.
And now continuing in no particular order ...
I'm doubled over in gratitude for my store volunteers, who have not only been ably handling the daily duties of keeping Mothersville open, but have been taking extra care to minimize my urges to step in and direct operations from afar.
Since having Miss M, I've been blessed to befriend a messload of amazing women and their families, and having them for support, commiseration and much needed help during and after this pregnancy was a colossal gift. I'm nervous to call anyone out by name because I'll be mortally embarrassed if I forget anyone, but I do need to offer specific thanks to the food-bringers - Kristy and RJA (for the meals brought after the birth as well as the dozens provided during gestation, including whatever I managed to get down while my pregnant, flu-ridden, husband-in-Europe self was languishing on their couch), Stephanie (not only for bringing food - hotdish, even! - but for dragging people to my house to eat when I wasn't able to get out), Stacey (for honoring my deep-seated love of the empty carb), Katie (for bringing pie despite how miserably I failed her after her own delivery) and Amanda (it takes a good person to bring thrice-washed organic salad to a new mom she barely knows).
And thanks to you out there, everyone who has been reading the blog, offering your sympathy and good wishes as the situation warrants.