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Dear Baby: It’s About Time I Wrote You a Letter

Dear Baby,

You’re almost here and I’m not sure I’ve written you even one letter yet. When I was pregnant with your sister I wrote to her weekly, reporting on the pregnancy, speculating on our future together, and describing the little life she was about to be part of with me and your father. But you, my dear, have had an altogether different ride with me so far. The funny thing is that even if I haven’t been writing to you all this time, or wondering as much about who you’ll be or how you’ll fit in, know that you’ve been along with me through one of the most exciting times in my whole life. That’s got to count for something, right?

All this time that you’ve been in my belly, we’ve been flying around the country, doing book readings and signings together, and generally making a spectacle of ourselves. Seems I can’t go anywhere these days without someone having something to say about my swelling belly, and who might be inside of it. Just like when I was pregnant with your sister, everyone (EVERYONE) says that you are a boy. We’ll find out in about six weeks for sure though. Either way, I’m excited to meet you.

I think you’re going to like our life. We live in a little house in Santa Monica, California and we make a point of going to the beach at least three times a week. Our friends are made up primarily of neurotic writers and weird creative types, and I swear there’s someone sleeping on our couch at least once a week. We have two cats, one of which won’t want anything to do with you, and the other of which will be game for pretty much anything you want to do with it. We have a lot of dinner parties, and we know a lot of other parents who have babies and kids that you can be friends with. Your dad and I are both working away on books all the time, which means we’re perpetually broke, but it also means we’re home all the time so you’ll see lots of both of us. You have A LOT of aunts and uncles and cousins. In fact, you are going to be your grandparents’ ninth grandchild. They’re even planning to be here for your birth day.

But the person who is most looking forward to welcoming you home is your sister, Veronica. All day, every day, she talks to you, rubbing my belly and bringing toys over to show you. She showers my tummy with kisses meant for you on an hourly basis, and reports regularly on all the things she’s going to do with you once you’re here (i.e. show you you favorite playgrounds, her collection of princess stuff, introduce you to our “new cat” Foster, and snuggle with you). Her opinion of whether you are a boy or a girl changes on an hourly basis, so I take that to mean that she doesn’t really mind one way or the other.

I have to be honest baby, it utterly dumbfounds me to think of having two children. Partly because I never imagined being a mother to two kids, and partly because I’m flabbergasted by the idea of siblings and have no idea what you two are going to do with each other. I do, at least, have the sense that this shift in our family dynamic is going to irrevocably alter my world view. In a good way. In an amazing way. But nonetheless, I’m pretty prepared to have my world rocked.

Oh, and have I mentioned that I’m working on this really intense book about the after life right now and that every single spiritual person I’ve seen in the last 7 months has told me that there is something VERY special about you, and that everything about my life is going to change in a big way because of you? I always laugh when the astrologer/psychic/acupuncturist/energy healer/medium/ says this, and I tell them, “Every baby is special and changes your life completely.”

Then they shake their heads, emphasizing that this is different and you are something EXTRA special. So, at this point I’m slightly fearful and also excited to find out what your story is, little one. Know that no matter what it is, you’ve got three people here (and probably a lot more) who are very much looking forward to your arrival.

Love,

Mom

p.s. I’m REALLY sick of being pregnant so feel free to come a week or two early.

I’m really thrilled to announce the publication of Wedding Cake for Breakfast, an anthology about the first year of marriage. Pick it up today and read about my first year with Greg. You can also come out to see me read from it on May 31 at 7pm at the Santa Monica Barnes & Noble. I’m going to be soooo pregnant.

Another event I’m excited about is a salon I’m participating in this month in Laguna Beach. If you’re in Southern California, this is going to be a great evening, and I’d love to see you there. Pen on Fire Writers Salon: May 15th at 7pm.

Here’s an interview with me brought to you by the astoundingly-talented teen book critic Robby Auld.

Here’s an essay I wrote for The Huffington Post on what cancer seemed like at age 14.

I wrote a Letter in the Mail for The Rumpus. It’s being mailed out this weekend, and it’s not too late to subscribe!

 

 

 

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8 Comments

  1. Claire, blessings to you as you come closer every day to the birth of baby number two. My daughter gave birth one week ago to her second daughter. Big sister, five years old, is doing so well accepting change. It certainly is an honor for me, Granny, to observe. As I hold and swaddle my newborn granddaughter, I can’t help but think how the end of my parents’ lives mirrored the beginning of new life. My parents birthed their souls to afterlife. My daughter birthed her child to life. Both experiences touched by the Creator.

    Comment by Jean Lee on May 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm

  2. So lovely and honest. This child is bound to be special–born into an incredibly lovely triumvirate who will no doubt help shape his/her life into something amazing. Thanks for continuing to share your journey with us. It’s a great source of courage and inspiration. xoxo.

    Comment by Ron Stempkowski on May 1, 2012 at 6:26 pm

  3. I’ve been MIA lately due to tax season and other things. It was great being able to meet you at The Book Stall. I think what I loved most was Greg’s comments from our seats. How wonderful you both are.

    Anxiously awaiting the new arrival. So glad you’re sharing it will all of us in your blog.

    Comment by Helene on May 2, 2012 at 9:38 am

  4. Always happy to hear from you, Helene! Hope all is well! xo

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 2, 2012 at 10:06 am

  5. Thank you, Ron! Glad you’re here along with me! xo

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 2, 2012 at 10:07 am

  6. Thank you so much, Jean! Congratulations on your new granddaughter!

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 2, 2012 at 10:09 am

  7. My friend, Esther, forwarded this letter to me. I was so touched by it that I had to respond. Thank you so much for sharing such sweet sentiments – you made my cloudy day a joyful one! Blessings to you and your family! My best, Lee Ann

    Comment by Lee Ann on May 2, 2012 at 4:43 pm

  8. Thank you for reading, Lee Ann!

    Comment by Claire Bidwell Smith on May 2, 2012 at 4:52 pm

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