Sunday, 31 August 2014

Dear Baby

Dear Emma,

You are one month old.  To be more specific, you are 45 days old.  Or 1,080 hours old.  Or 3,888,000 seconds old.

Becoming a mum has been a learning curve.  Sure, I say I'm getting the hang of it, but I really have no idea what I'm doing.

The other day, you were crying and nothing I did would calm you down. I tried bouncing you, singing to you and playing "Country Roads" (as that oddly makes you calm down and drift off).  The only thing I could think of to do was feed you - even though you had just been fed. You quieted down and then I just sat and cried.  That was just another reminder that I have no idea what I'm doing. I thought you hated me as I just couldn't make things right for you. 

I know my horomones are all over the place, but I honestly become so overwhelmed with emotion at some points in the day. They aren't necessarily sad emotions. Just strong, heart pumping feelings.  Sometimes it's when you start feeding. Other times it's when I can't soothe you to sleep. Sometimes it's even when you are having a play with daddy and your big, beautiful eyes are shining and a little smile is playing around your tiny face. 

They say you feel this overwhelming sense of love. I had no idea what that really meant. My friend Gina sent me this gorgeous little quote from Colette's La Maison de Claudine:

"They do say that children like you, who have been carried so high in the womb and have taken so long to come down into the daylight, are always the children that are the most loved, because they have lain so near to their mother's heart and have been so unwilling to leave her." 

 Your first few hours, days and weeks were difficult.  Not just getting used to being a mum but also learning how you worked and what you wanted.  If you were unsettled or crying, I felt like it was my fault.  Babies cry. I get it. But it's still heart wrenching.  

The countless weigh ins and those admissions into hospital? When you needed that ultrasound on your hip because the doctors thought it was clicking?  The feeling of sitting in the doctors office while they snipped your tongue tie?  Good grief. The guilt I felt was unbelievable. 

But you know what feels even worse than that?  I have a bag of clothes that I'm putting together of things you've outgrown. Imagine that. You have outgrown clothes!  Nothing seemed to fit for weeks and weeks because you were so teeny tiny!  Now I'm buying bigger leggings and bigger onesies. You've even grown into the too cute headbands, which is exciting - but also kind of sad. 

The biggest thing that has gotten me through the guilt and the crying and the doctors appointments is the realisation that I'll never have these moments again. You'll never be this young again. You'll never be this little. You'll never be this new. I'm awed by what you can do - smiling and lifting your head. These are all new tricks that you couldn't do not so long ago. So while I'm finding some things really difficult, I'm treasuring those smiles at 3 AM because I know these moments are limited. 

I love you, baby girl.  Keep growing, keep smiling.


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