Taking a little detour from my usual beauty posts to talk about a very special moment for my family!
Life has been a bit crazy the last couple of weeks! My nephew has finally arrived! I was in the delivery room with my sister and brother-in-law (Jay) and after experiencing the other side of labor and delivery, I wanted to share what was going through my mind as well as give a bit of insight into the relationship I have with my sister. Family is so important to me, and while my relationship with my sister has been tumultuous most of our lives, this experience most definitely strengthened our bond.My sister’s due date was January 14; but like with most first pregnancies, he had no plans of coming on time. In fact, he was LATE. REALLY LATE. 8 days to be exact! I should have figured that this little guy was going to be a pain in the ass just like my sister! (I kid, I kid…kind of!)
Before I really dive into this post, let me give you a little background on my sister, our relationship, and why I decided to write this. My sister’s name is Brittany, she’s the older but definitely not wiser sister (just kidding Britt!) and she has been with my brother-in-law for almost 15 years. Legit since she was a junior in high school. Crazy, right? When she told me she was pregnant, I am pretty sure I shrieked in excitement. I don’t think anyone was more excited than Jay though; he had been trying to convince her to give him a baby for YEARS. If that doesn’t give you an indication as to her level of stubbornness than I don’t know what will!
The relationship I have had with my sister has been quite the emotional rollercoaster. When we are good, its great and we are the best of friends. The alternative to that is not something I could ever truly describe in words. We’re both extraordinarily competitive and headstrong. Arguably good character traits to have, but they have proven to be detrimental to our relationship over and over again. Being the younger sibling I always felt I had something to prove; and especially to her. As we got older, relationships outside of ours became seemingly more important to her, leaving me with feelings of inadequacy. I just wanted us to have that super close bond that you see in the movies. Needless to say, we were the furthest thing from a laugh until you cry lifetime movie special.
She did everything the right way. Found the nice guy, lived beneath their means in order to have more for their future, and then decided
after a long ass time they were truly financially stable to have a child. I, on the other hand, dated some real assholes pieces of work. Cheated on, lied to, abused…which unfortunately only perpetuated the feelings of inadequacy that developed in my early teenage years. Listen, this is not some moment where I am saying my sister did everything perfectly and she doesn’t have flaws because she’s got quite a few. (I know she will read this so I just have to keep the girl’s ego in check, k?) I went through the partying phase where I was out drinking with my friends more often than not and then life smacked me right in the face with a positive pregnancy test at the age of 22. At the time my then boyfriend (but now my hubby!) and I had just gotten back together only a few months before. (He was the only good one I ever dated so of course I tried to sabotage it because I guess I liked being lied to and cheated on by the prior ones? What an idiot I was…) I can safely say my insecurities reached an all time high at that point in my life. We will skip over most of the details, as it has turned out wonderfully for my family and me, but I just remember being more fearful to tell my sister than I was to tell my parents. Cue an extremely up and down relationship with my sister for the next 7-ish years.
We had a really horrible blowout during the planning of her baby shower and I honestly didn’t know if we would ever get back on track. After a couple of months not speaking, we eventually sat down and let it all out. We came to the mutual agreement to move on once and for all. My nephew was coming and I knew deep down what my sister was going through being pregnant for the first time. I wanted her to know that regardless of all of the things we had done to hurt each other, I would always have her back and she could lean on me.
Let’s get to that heartwarming Lifetime movie special stuff now shall we?! January 21 (Baby Easton 7 days late) Brittany text me in the morning that she was having contractions but they were manageable. I told her to just keep me posted and that I would make sure to keep my schedule clear if she needed me. Fast forward several hours, she is at the hospital getting ready to be admitted at around 6:30 p.m. I was at the hospital at 8 p.m. I could tell by my brother in law’s purple hand, he was in desperate need of a break and maybe a minute to walk around. Side note: my family is not a super mushy gushy family full of hugs and tears. We love each other but that stuff has just never been our thing. However, walking into that room seeing my sister in so much pain, struggling, I knew she needed my physical and emotional support. I held her hand and she put her head into my shoulder during each contraction. Although my sole intent was to help her during labor, those moments and the moments leading up to the birth of my nephew ended up helping me just as much. I never really expected us to have a moment where our relationship truly healed. (Who knows, maybe she’ll read this and say, “we did?”) Regardless of whether or not she experienced the same thing, I was finally able to, albeit unintentionally, let go of my feelings of anger, resentment, and inadequacy.
Witnessing the birth of my nephew, after delivering two children of my own, was such a special moment. It was incredibly surreal, watching my sister and brother-in-law experience the emotions that come along with having a child. I am proud of myself for the support I was able to provide her knowing how scared she was. I can’t truly say that we ever actually respected each other fully. A mutual respect was developed that day. Maybe it was a mother to mother thing. All I know is that some of the greatest things in life are extremely difficult to articulate when they mean something to you. Our relationship has caused me a great deal of stress and pain; for that to be lifted from me is an indescribable feeling. I am proud of my sister, I am proud of my growth as a person from this experience, and I am proud of us as mothers, sisters, and as friends.
Baby Easton was welcomed into the world January 22, 2017 at 5:28 a.m. weighing 6 lbs. 13 oz. and was 19.5 inches long. He is beautiful and so very loved by his auntie. Undoubtedly, the coolest aunt on the planet! ; )
At the end of the day when you’re feeling defeated or just need someone with whom you can be 100% authentic, your family is there. Everyone has issues in their family. Sometimes it takes being the bigger person to try to initiate repair, but take that step. I promise you it is worth it.
I wanted to share some pre and post delivery photos! I am by no means a photographer but my sister did have professional maternity photos done by the incredibly talented Jaclyn Photography. They came out beautifully and I had to share a couple! If you are in the Mass/CT/NY area give her a website a look and check her out on Instagram as well! (@jaclyn.photography) My nephew is headed to her studio this weekend for his newborn shoot and I cannot wait to see what she captures!
Baby Shower selfie!
Jaclyn captured so many beautiful photos for my sister and Jay. Brittany was originally not planning to do a shoot until I talked her into doing one. She is so glad she decided to do it. Those photos will be cherished for the rest of their lives. Jaclyn does more than just maternity and newborn photos! Engagements, weddings, headshots, and most recently she has acquired quite the following of her boudoir photos! I will link her private Facebook boudoir group (for women only!) that has over 15,000 members! Click here!
*I am not receiving compensation, free or discounted services for mentioning Jaclyn.Photography. I am simply supporting a woman who is following her passion and is gifted in the art of photography!
Here he is!Baby E looks just like Daddy!The very happy, but extremely tired, new mommy and daddy!