Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I'm not "In Love" with my child

It has always irked me when people say "we are so in love" after having a baby. It always seemed so cliche and almost a forced emotional statement. Something reserved for young engaged couples, not encompassing this magnificent upheaval of the heart that parenthood brings. I swore I would never use it, and I don't think I ever had a desire to. I'm not sure I ever tried to put into words the magnitude of my emotions for my child because frankly there are not words in any language that can encompass what I feel for him.

I'm not even sure how I can have another child because how can my heart, body, soul & mind possibly survive this amount of unconditional feeling x 2 without exploding? "I'm in love" does not even come close to being a proper descriptive phrase.

"I would fight tigers for him" seems more apt because at least it portrays the protective qualities and ferociousness of emotion I have. You don't know how protective you can be until having a child.

I've always maintained I could shoot someone defending my home and loved ones. I would not hesitate to watch a bullet mutilate skin and bone of a kneecap to stop the advancement of a robber etc.

I don't even think I would bother with that now. If someone were to put my child in danger or attempt harm anywhere in the vacinity, I would go for the kill and I do not take life easily. I feel guilty squishing bugs, I'm a prolifer in all aspects, but I will truly fight tigers (or robbers) to the death to protect my son. To protect this indescribable love for this small creature I brought into the world for he is what I live for. He is the best part of me and I can't imagine going on without him. I love beyond comparison, beyond time, beyond words.

Even "I love you to the moon and back" doesn't come close but is definitely more apt than "i'm in love."

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

3 Month Letter

Dear Matthew,
You are three Months old. You turned three months on July 7th and I wrote the following letter to you; but as my hands are full with you and a full time job, I'm just now posting it. You are growing so fast I can't keep up with the changes. I have visions of your future adventures as you start to crawl, walk, run. We've introduced you to jumper toys and you are happy with them for short lengths of time.

You are interacting with toys now, mostly trying to shove them in your mouth but that's okay. You chose your first toy at babies R Us- a little dinosaur that Cody the dog keeps trying to steal from you. You have a long road fighting over toys with that one.

Daddy has taught you to blow raspberries and you think its the greatest thing for us to do it. Dancing with Momma around the living room elicits deep rolling belly laughs that echo through the house and makes my heart trip over itself.

Momma had to go back to work but you have been having good days with your great-aunt Lynn. It tears me up to leave you but when I come home and you light up with smiles and turn towards my voice it heals thosse cracks a little because despite the distance you don't forget me. I only hope that one day you know why I sacrifice time with you and understand that its out of love because providing opportunity, security, and physical necessities for you is the only thing that could drag me away. I stare at your pictures and think of you all day long, rushing out the door to see your smiling face.

The first week was really rough but the past several days you have slept through the night and it has made all the difference. It's amazing that I can now function well on 5 hours of sleep, but I thank you for having mostly good nights since the day you were born.

You still love the outdoors and bathtime. This week we will be combining the two & introducing you to the swimming pool. I foresee many summers of swimming with friends in your future.

I look forward to all your stages, the things you will do and see but I will continue to beg you to slow down. My cuddly, snuggly baby is fastly turning into a happy bubbly bouncy boy with a sweet disposition. I hope you never out grow giving your mom a kiss and hug because that innocent affection you show is the greatest thing I've ever experienced.

Friday, July 15, 2011

I was Lost and Now am Found

Not just words to the most well known hymn, but the truth of my journey to motherhood that reigned down upon my head in the form of an epiphany (singing telegram style.)

As my child stared up at me, with the most adorable smile on his face, and his little fingers wrapped tightly around mine, I rocked and opened my mouth to sing him a lullabye. What came out was a shaking whispered rendition of Amazing Grace as tears spilled down my face. He only smiled wider.

I named him Matthew which means Gift from God and tonight as I sang to him, I felt the spirit of the Lord wrap around us as if to say, "you have arrived. You are a mother and you have the love of THE son."

Becoming a mother was nothing like anything I imagined and for the first little bit you are so overwhelmed with everything that its almost like you are playing a part. You are so afraid of messing up, doing something wrong, that you are careful about going through the motions. Lately though, I feel it. I AM A MOTHER and I see the love on his face every day. He knows me as his mother and no one will replace me or take that away.

I have had my doubts with religion, my bitter days, my questions. I have turned away and searched out other ways to find solace and peace of the heart. I have shaken my fists much like Lt. Dan in defiance. I have begged God, bargained with him, and cursed him. He never turned from me. My journey was long and littered with pain, loss and turmoil but I arrived at my destination according to his plan. I have recieved his gift and I welcome his love and thank him for bringing me through.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me....
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now, I see.

T'was Grace that taught...
my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear...
the hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares...
we have already come.
T'was Grace that brought us safe thus far...
and Grace will lead us home.

The Lord has promised good to me...
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be...
as long as life endures.

When we've been here ten thousand years...
bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise...
then when we've first begun.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me....
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now, I see.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

the Mom Syndrome

I have a whole new appreciation for my mother now that I am one. Growing up there are aspects to a mother you can never understand.She baffles your brain.

She watches TV standing up, never quite having he rattention caught as she's cooking dinner/cleaning/wrangling children at the same time.

No matter how early you wake up, she's already awake (with coffee in her hand.)

While everyone is enjoying a lazy weekend, the mom is still working-making meals, cleaning up, washing the beach towels, etc. (probably nagging for a little help.)

She's almost always the last to bed, making sure dishes are done, food is put away, bags are packed for the morning, turning off lights.

If you ever get her to sit down to a movie, she falls asleep. She is always tired and carries a faint scent of coffee like its a fine perfume.

I have officially become my mother, and as much as I lamented this future as a teenager, its really not a bad place to be. It's exhausting and the work is never done, but I feel accomplished on a good day and the moments of snuggling, the smiles and joy and love on my child's face are worth every yawn & dust bunny, and evn worth becoming my mother, because, hey, I didn't turn out so bad!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The heartbreak of working moms

It's hard leaving. The mornings aren't so bad. He's been up and eaten, changed, dressed, had playtime or snuggles with daddy, eaten again and is a little sleepy when I hand him over. At lunch though, he doesn't have enough time with me to breastfeed properly. He spends 20-30 minutes trying to cuddle and alternating between feeding and smiling up at me adoringly. When its time to go my aunt has to practically pry him from my arms as I steal just one (hundred) more kiss and soak up another smile. It's agony sneaking out behind his back because if I see the love on his face and those big blue eyes watching me, I'll never leave again.

In the evenings he clings and I cling back because I have to make up for all the hugs, smiles, kisses I missed today. I miss being pregnant and having him with me all the time but I can't get enough of him. Time needs to slow down.

Time is supposed to make seperation easier but I don't see how. It's just a reminder of how much I'm missing. It would be great if I worked at a place that had daycare on the premises or I could work a few days from home even. Breaks & Lunch I could go breastfeed and see him more. In a way, I like getting adult time to conversate, organize my bills, budgets, etc. I already feel more competent and organized again.

But there's always the leaving and the missed smiles that trump the small pleasures of working (minus the paycheck which is why I work.)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Never say Never

I will Never...

...let my grandma keep my baby. She's getting frail.

...ask for help from anyone.

...leave my infant with someone other than his father.

...feed my child formula.

...co sleep. He has his own room.

...kiss my baby on the mouth.

...buy one of those hideously ugly bumbo seats.

A lesson in statements you make before becoming a parent...because you will obviously stick to them so well.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Better than a Firework

Genesis 9:12-13
And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth.

Happy 4th of July

This is the first July 4th that I have not hosted my annual pool party. We had downsized this year to just immediate family. We cancelled even that at the last minute last night because my husband was severely stressed out with the amount of work to be done, his to do list, and getting behind in school. We went to bed at odds with each other last night which never happens.

Our pool isn't swimmable. The water is finally clear, the algae is dead but we are still trying to get the debris (dead algae film and leaves) off the bottom. It will be a few more days. He's fighting that in the 90 degree heat.

I have to admit, I had hoped to automatically incorporate the babe into our lives and celebrate each holiday from the get go. I feel VERY out of sorts not doing anything on the 4th as it has always been one of my big hostessing holidays. It makes me a little angry. I bought the baby a special outfit (not the one pictured above).

I am determined to salvage something out of today later. Even if its just the two of us eating meatloaf sandwiches and fruit and watching a movie. Afterall I have 15 pounds of hamburger, a whole watermelon and pineapple and the makings for a dessert because I had planned for a party of 10 when I went shopping yesterday.

I don't want to be one of those people that cancels plans because I have a child. He is not the ultimate reason I cancelled. I cancelled because of our stress in maintaining and doing everything which has become a little difficult with a child. He is worth every cancelled plan, every holiday at home watching a hoarders marathon but I want him to have a full happy life..including 4th of July Pool parties.