Percy Patrick Arthur Donnelly arrived at 9.13pm on Thursday 22nd November. Lifted into the world after his poor mother had tried for thirty four hours to push him into it.
And the world is simply not the same. Won’t ever be. Kevin and I are already terrified in ways we never imagined possible, awed both by Percy’s fragility and his magnificent will (his maternal Grandma describes him as a gorgeous tyrant) and both very, very much in love with this small, determined and perfect person.
Percy’s birth weight was a respectable 9lb 8oz but he’s struggled to regain that following the loss of weight all babies experience in the days after birth. He’s been weighed repeatedly, something I would refuse next time as it’s been a huge source of stress to me and that, in turn, has had an impact on Kevin and probably on Percy too. This week he seems to have turned a corner – though he’s still not back to his birth weight – and I hope it’s onward and upward from here.
I’ve written here before about my love of Advent but this year it’s felt more like T S Eliot’s opening to The Journey of the Magi than anything warm and tinselly.
“A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a journey…”
Poor Percy was perfectly happy where he was and had absolutely no intention of budging; he actually spent four of the last few hours of my induced labour fast asleep, leading the midwife to guess that he was a “lazy boy” as we didn’t know his gender. Out he’s come into the frosty December days to parents who feel suddenly old and inept and who keep apologising to him that he’s been landed with clumsy first-timers. But there’s hope; his maternal Grandpa wrote in a lovely Advent calendar card of it being “the Queen of Seasons” and of Mary’s faithfulness, something we hope to share with Percy as he grows.
Be patient with us, little one. Let the Advent-ure begin.