While I was in the hospital, after learning that Oscar and Bella would be born within a few days, I sent Jon and his brother to our house to move the things that were all over our house into the basement. I knew that I didn’t want to go home and have to put everything away just Jon and me. I think I somehow knew that would be too big of a task for me.
We had just completed our registry, and were starting to add things to their room. We already had 2 cribs, sans mattresses, and a glider with ottoman in their room. We may have had other items, but those are what I remember clearly were in their room before they were born. Upon returning home, the cribs were taken down, but the chair remained. It took me a little while before I could walk by their room without crying. One day, I walked in, sat in the glider and just cried. I waited until I was ready to enter the room, but the door was open and waiting for me whenever I got to that point. In the very beginning, after I was okay going into their room, I went in there to feel a connection to them, to feel close to them, but then…
…we conceived again. Throughout our next pregnancy, it was still Oscar’s and Bella’s room. It wasn’t until months after Gus was born that I referred to the room as Gus’ instead of Oscar’s and Bella’s. I still remember the punch of guilt that hit my stomach when “Gus’ room” came out of my mouth. For in those two words, I was reminded that though the intent of that room was for Oscar and Bella, it would never be theirs. They would never make memories there. We would never have sleepless nights there. We would never have diaper accidents there. We would never have slammed doors, books on the floor or laughter and fun WITH THEM in that room.
Being the youngest of four, I’m no stranger to hand-me-downs, so when we were cautiously preparing to bring Gus home, we did not change the theme of the room at all. Primary colors, letters, numbers and shapes. In fact, we kept a shower gift (that was sent early and arrived just after Oscar and Bella were born) and Gus still uses in his room every day. My mom purchased two blankets we had on our registry for Oscar and Bella. When we were pregnant again, she asked if we still wanted them. I told her we would take one and she could return the other. Now that Gus is in his toddler bed (one of the cribs that we had received for Oscar and Bella) he used the blanket every night while he sleeps. Jon has started refinishing a bookcase that was mine as a child, but it remained unfinished once Oscar and Bella were born. It now sits in Gus’ room holding books and toys. To some, it may seem like Gus didn’t get his own stuff, that we just reused Oscar’s and Bella’s stuff for him. Well, that’s true. Gus is not the first child, and therefore he is forced to share things from his older siblings.
I think this makes me feel better, that he has a connection to them, that he inherited things from them, but we are adding things of his own to what we already had for Oscar and Bella…and we can’t forget Tittle; he just sneaks in wherever he wants to.