Believe it or not, our family of four slept in our private hospital room. There was a chair that folded out into a bed where my husband and daughter slept, while the new baby and I slept on the oh-so-comfortable hospital bed. After a couple days/nights at the hospital, we were all looking forward to going home. We packed up our gear (Really, like we went on vacation or something!), put the baby in his “coming home” outfit and car seat, was wheeled down to the parking lot, and all buckled up in our respective seats. It was surreal to see Miranda sitting on one side of the backseat, and Baby Paulo on the other side. It was also surreal to actually see our complete family sitting together in our family car, and driving home. My husband and I reminisced that when we drove home from the hospital when Miranda was born, we were driving no more than 40 MPH on the freeway. But this time around, we were driving at normal speeds and couldn’t wait to get home.
That night, as we tried to get situated with our new family, we didn’t know what to do first. Our daughter was so tired and needed to get ready for bed. The baby was crying – either from hunger or a wet diaper. Miranda is a stickler for her routine, and with the new baby, my husband and I kept bumping into each other or passing the baby back and forth. It was as if we were running a marathon but we didn’t know the route to take. We decided on Daddy taking care of Miranda while Mommy took care of Paulo. Part of me was aching to read to Miranda because that was usually my job. Once the baby was asleep, I put him down and sneaked into my daughter’s room to give her a goodnight kiss. To my dismay, she was already asleep as well. My heart broke, and for a second I thought, “What have I done? Our lives were so perfect with just the three of us, and now we have a new person who is taking my time away from my daughter.”
The next morning, Paulo and I woke up Miranda. We went into her room and sat next to her in bed. “Good morning, big sister. It’s me, Baby Paulo. Wake up.” Then we gave her kisses. She opened one eye, looked at us, and smiled. Oh, to see Miranda’s smile that morning made it all worthwhile. So this is what I’ve done. I’ve made our lives more perfect by adding a new person to the family.