This post has been brewing for a while now, effectively since you were born, and definitely since you crossed the 9-month threshold. Suddenly, you have been alive in the world longer than you were alive inside of me. Just as the first days of pregnancy looked nothing like the last moments, life now looks nothing like it did during your earliest days.
Life has changed
Things take more planning these days. We used to be able to drop everything and go on a weekend adventure. Now, a quick trip to the supermarket takes a fair amount planning. When did you last eat? When were you last changed? When was your last nap? We can take you most anywhere, with the right gear, but we can’t always stay long. You’re the boss, but you’re a fair boss…your employees like you a lot.
My daily schedule makes more sense. I used to wake up on a Saturday after 10, hang out, start some random project around the house, and find myself still in my pajamas at 2. These days, we wake up at 7. There is a morning nap that signals the beginning of afternoon, and an afternoon nap the signals the beginning of evening. You have a bedtime. I eat lunch. Although different and chaotic at times, our days have purpose. I have to get up, I am needed.
You have changed
You used to always want me to nurse you to sleep, Lately, you don’t always need it. Some nights, you point to your crib, I put you down, and you fall asleep alone. While it makes me happy to see you becoming more independent, I would be lying if I said I wasn’t having a hard time letting go of your tiny days.
Still, it’s so exciting to get to know you. Every day that passes is like unwrapping a little present. We learn more about you. You know what you like, and you know what you don’t like. Things make you laugh, and the sound of your belly laugh makes my heart skip a beat. You are careful, yet curious. You love to explore, and yet, you usually check back in with me after a few minutes away. You are sweet, kind, and you try so hard to be gentle with the cat. We will continue to work on that.
You are exactly how I hoped you’d be, and yet, I couldn’t have imagined this.
I have changed
I’v heard it described before that babies are the “great levelers.” They come into the world and completely level everything, leaving our Pinterest-perfect nurseries in shambles. Once we are humbled, instead of including baby into our old lives, we build new lives. These lives are simpler, and more joyful, as they include baby. We dance delicately around the fact that nothing will ever be the same, and we feel guilty if we yearn for the life we once knew. It’s normal to miss pre-baby freedom, yet still love your child to pieces.
As time passes and things fall into place. I realize that I am strong, and as a couple, we are strong. We can operate on 4 hours of sleep, we can meet your needs, and we can handle all the poop. We can be a mommy and a daddy, and we can find joy in the simplest nuisances of every day. Suddenly, our new life is brimming with new love, and I don’t really remember how we lived without you.
That’s where we are now. I’ve never been loved like this before.
Lately, I keep making the mistake of saying that “time is going by so fast.” It’s not, that’s impossible. Technically, time will always pass at the same speed. Instead, I am just more aware of time as it passes, and I wish I could slow it down. You will keep growing and keep changing into a little person, and eventually, a big person.
I couldn’t feel more privileged to have a front row seat.