All are well and at home as Anne approaches one week old. 2½ year old big sister Katie has reacted predictably to this addition, with equal measures of cuteness and chaos.
Whereas shock and life-changing awe was the initial reaction to Katie's arrival back in 2007, Anne's arrival has been one juxtaposition after another:
It's the stark contrast between the needs of a newborn and the needs of a preschooler.
It's remembering how nervous we were when Katie wouldn't sleep or eat or was fussy versus our expectation now that these situations will pass, then return, only to pass again.
It's the suburban California setting that Anne has entered compared to the urban New York world that first greeted Katie.
The things that haven't changed?
Yep, we're still naming our daughters as if we have the full expectation that they may need to someday serve as the Queen of England (Anne Charlotte, meet Catherine Emily. I assure you that, should we someday have a boy, Æthelred is definitely a strong candidate for his name).
Yep, the flood of emotion at greeting a new life is unchanged. In addition to in love, in awe, overjoyed, enamored, and profoundly satisfied, I propose we coin a term to describe the emotional state of the parent of a newborn — Darwinish. "Oh very little one, I long to take care of you so that you might grow, thrive, and – should you so choose – someday pass on your (and my) heritable traits."
Yep, some part of me is still shocked that the 80+% of the human population that reproduces is largely able to cope with the demands of these little things. Looking at a newborn, you're immediately reminded of the frailty of human life. Looking at all the former newborns walking around you each day, you're constantly reminded that we are a resilient species.