Monday, January 28, 2013

Abigail #2: 1-4 months

When Abigail was just a few weeks old, we moved from Provo, UT to St. Joseph, Michigan for the summer.  Neil was doing an internship for Whirlpool (betcha didn't know their global headquarters are in Michigan) and so we spent the summer living in a tiny little resort town near the beach.  Happily, my parents lived about 45 minutes away and Neil's brother & his family were about two hours away, so it was fun to still be near family.

The picture above is one that I love--it looks like Isaac is holding Abigail!  In actuality, it's my nephew Joshua, who is now 12 or so and continues to be one of the sweetest and most adorable boys I've ever met.

 I wish we'd spent more time at the beach that summer (especially now that it's the beach we drive to with our kids!) but the fact is, I was so terrified of new motherhood and felt so clueless that I never went anywhere by myself and rarely left our apartment.  Occasionally I'd be very brave and venture out for walks with Abigail (which was scary because our apartment was on a busy road with no sidewalks), but mostly I just stayed home and slept and cried and ate chocolate chips and read Agatha Christie mysteries.  It was not a high point in my life, but in retrospect it was a turning point that has dramatically impacted the intervening years and has shaped almost everything I've done since.

I realized that if I wanted to be good at this motherhood business, I actually had to really work at it and make an effort instead of just lying around and waiting for it to work out on its own.  (I also had to start exercising, which had never been a consistent thing for me since I quit soccer my sophomore year of high school.)  More about that journey in later posts.

One of the things that Neil and I remember most vividly about Abigail's early months (and so does everyone else who knew her) is her odd digestive schedule.  She would literally go for ten days between bowel movements--something which her pediatrician reassured me was normal--but it got pretty terrifying around day 6 or 7.  She would be totally miserable and I spent hours drawing her knees up to her chest trying to give her relief.  After a few weeks, we realized that if we took her to a local grocery store with a bumpily tiled floor, the bumping almost inevitably did the trick.  So we'd often drive to the grocery store, walk around until the Mt. Vesuvius-like explosion happened, and then wrap her backside in plastic bags and paper towels and drive home with the windows open.  (It smelled exactly like buttered movie popcorn, which means that whenever I enter a movie theater now, I'm still nauseated!!)

 I think this photo may have been taken at my grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary party.  Perhaps not, but it was really fun to live close to my family that summer and have a visit from my dear uncle and aunt who live in New York.

 The above picture makes me realize how long it's been since we took this photo--my youngest sister Rosalind, who is holding Abigail, was just married a month ago.

At the end of the summer, we camped through Michigan's Upper Peninsula with my parents and little sisters.  It was so, so, so fun and amazing beautiful.  One of my absolute favorite sets of photos from that is here and some more about our adventures here.

Some things I loved about baby Abigail:  her chubby square face and her big round blueberry eyes.

 I love it when Neil gives our babies this smile.

 And, of course, we can't forget Abigail's other defining characteristic--sucking on thumbs and toes!!  I haven't had any other thumb-sucker babies, but boy, Abigail made up for it on their behalf.  This kid had her toes plugged firmly in her mouth all summer, and once I covered them with socks for the cold Utah winter, her thumb just about never left her mouth until she was three.

This is kind of a lame way to end, but the school bus just pulled up, so I must run!


Mary Beth said...

Astonishing how much the baby resembles the little girl. You can totally see the Abigail she'll grow into in her face!

Meghan said...

I agree with Mary Beth; she is definitely Abigail at a very early age.
These pictures are so wonderful. Can't wait to see you all again.

Elise said...

I love these throwback posts. Also, I think that that picture of Rosalind holding Abigail is so so sweet.

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