Dear Dumplings — 5 weeks: The First Letter


Dear Dumplings,

I was going to wait until next Wednesday to start these letters, but it seems I can’t.  So much is going on inside of me, I find it impossible to not be in constant conversation with you.  Today you are 5 weeks and 3 days old according to how they figure these things, but you have officially been kicking around inside of your Mama for 20 days.  For the two weeks prior to that you were growing inside the Girl Who Likes Chicken n’ Dumplings in preparation to come and grow in my belly.  Then you kicked around in a lab for a five days with some really smart and caring embryologists.  That’s where you joined up with parts of your Daddy and became perfect, strong little dumplings.

How cool is that?

Depending on which book or website I am reading, they tell me you are about the size of a mustard seed or sesame seed.  So tiny.  So furiously growing.  Your neural tube has formed and you are now working on your brain, nervous and cardiovascular systems.  This gives a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘have faith like a grain of mustard seed’ for me.  I hope I give you everything you need to get it all done.   It’s hard to believe you will grow into a baby in such a relatively short time, starting from cells smaller than the smallest seed.

One week from today your Daddy and I will find out how many of you are in there and hopefully the doctor will tell us everyone is growing on schedule.  If my fatigue, hunger, nausea, breast tenderness, heartburn, constipation and other miscellaneous symptoms are any indication — you are doing just fine.  I have symptoms, and I am so grateful for them I hardly notice the minor inconvenience of it all.  I’ve waited years to have these symptoms, so I say, bring it on. The most interesting thing so far is how I feel the rush of new hormone being produced by you — at least that is how I am interpreting it.  Some days it is stronger than others, but last night — while shopping in Pavillions — it came on really strong.  The rushing in my body, as if someone has turned up my water pressure.

Of course we’re already planning for your arrival, which will likely be early to mid-October according to the online due date calculators.  We are going to turn my office into your nursery since there is a door from it into our bedroom.  It works out well.  I have always been irritated that this door existed as it seemed so unnecessary, but now I can see why it was added.  I think the previous owners had a nursery in the same room and wanted quick access by adding the door.  Now I’m glad they did.  It’s all about perspective, I guess.

Your grandparents are all excited and waiting with the same amount of anticipation for next Wednesday.  Everyone is sort of holding their breath hoping for good news next week.  I can’t hold my breath because you need all the oxygen I can give you.  So I breathe; deeply.  I have faith the mustard seeds are growing; by next week they tell me you’ll be the size of a lentil.  I think that’s a pretty big jump from a mustard seed to a lentil.  I’ll admit, I got them out and compared them.

Daddy keeps feeding me like he’s trying to take me to the state fair for a weigh-in, so today I made him take me out and exercise me.  We went on a hike and saw this really huge house.  Massive house.  It was an ugly massive house on this hill overlooking the Santa Monica mountains.  It’s been sitting there for years now, empty.  Every time we hike this particular trail, we always marvel at all the money that must have been spent to build such a large, unattractive house.

I would never want to live in a house that big, it seems so lonely, I said.

Yeah, like you could never fill it up.  Each person would probably end up in their own corner of the place, Daddy said.

I’ve read that families who live in really large houses aren’t as close.  I read it’s one of the reasons Linda McCartney raised her kids in a small house in the countryside.  There may or may not be scientific evidence involved in that statement.

A house needs to be filled with family and friends and activity.  That place is too big, not enough trees surrounding the house.

If we have more than one in here, there will be lots of activity, I said.  I want a nice sized ranch house on at least an acre, but not too big.  Lots of trees.  The house should not eat the land.

I know. I know, Daddy replied; smiling.

I’ll mow.

If you mow like you cook we’ll starve in the weeds, he laughed.

He has a point.  I have to prove myself a little more consistently with the cooking thing, but I can do it.  I am a good cook.  I promise you won’t starve.

This house we’re in right now is not a perfect house and it’s not a forever house, but it’s where we are today.  I promise we’ll have it all ready when you get here.  Filled with family and friends, lots of activity and lots of love; just like your Daddy said.

Next week we’ll have a better idea of what is going on in my belly, but this week, I just wanted you to know how much we love you already.  Please keep growing big and strong.  I’ll keep feeding you dumplings.



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