When Elliott was six months old I got the shock of my life and found out I was pregnant again. I cried. These weren't tears of happiness, either. They were tears of worry, fear. Months before that we were contemplating the question of when we would try for another little one but after the shocking news of Elliott's diagnosis and the mess of emotions that came with it, we were pretty sure we needed a breather from excitement. We wanted to settle in and get to know our son again, who we felt we were missing after several months of hospital food and tough decisions. Elliott must have been home only about a month when I got pregnant again, and after another month of feeling amiss I pushed aside my denial and got that dreaded (or highly anticipated?) plus sign on the pregnancy test.
And so came the tears. The tears for our finances. Tears for my sanity. Tears for my sleep schedule. Tears for Elliott and the fear that a new baby would pull me away from him. Tears of guilt for not initially wanting this pregnancy. Tears of worry over the new baby's heart health.
Eventually, all that fear dissipated. What I knew more than anything was that Elliott needed this new baby. We all did. A new baby to remind us that we were a family, in a home vibrating with creativity, strength, and love and not just some statistic, some burdened couple with a sick child. Elliott needed a peer, someone on his level, to ground him and encourage confidence in a way my husband and I won't be able to in hard moments.
Our baby girl Penelope was born this last October, and I can see it already. That bond between the two of them, like they're already whispering secrets to each other. He loves to give her kisses and hugs, and she only has eyes for him. It is my deepest hope they will always have each other, that their love will grow deeper by the day. It is my hope that she will be his sweetest best friend.