Archive for November, 2010

November 23, 2010

days away from change

i probably wouldn’t have believed it, but i would’ve liked to have known that i might find the adjustment to motherhood difficult. not to mothering, that came with a degree of ease, i guess, but to the reality of being a mother.

i had always wanted to be a mother, always, and when this wish was fulfilled i felt so blessed. i was bursting with gratitude that i had been offered the opportunity to make, birth, love, nurture, and raise a little being. i was overjoyed and i was so in love with him, my husband (he gave me our son!), and my world.

once the complete and total bliss lifted though, there it was- my new life. and in my new life i was more in love then ever but i was tired- really tired- and pretty stressed too. also, i couldn’t help but notice that my new life was so rich in one area and very empty in others. my moo and i had a good rhythm and we shared loads of beauty time (i miss you beach walks!) but i was lonely and it was exhausting and i wondered: where was i in all this? where were my people?

once the insular stage of immediate mothering was coming to a close, i realised we didn’t yet have an external life to match who we were now. and if i had known that i could lose all confidence in my abilities or that all the ease i’d felt about my moo could leave, abruptly, or that every maternal instinct i had ever experienced could all of a sudden be threatened by insecurity, self doubt, and anxiety, i would have liked to have known. and, though i trusted myself most of the time, the long days were long and i would have liked to have heard that i was going to make it out the other side. i wondered, here and there.

the thing is, people tell you what it’s like to be a mother, often, and you don’t believe them. well, that’s not totally true… you just don’t hear them. you don’t have the context to actually make sense of what they are saying and everything sounds kinda cliché and simplistic and worn. the thing is, it’s true and unfortunately, it takes becoming a mother to know. in my opinion, there is no way of being prepared before hand.

if i was back there, days away from the momentous life change we embarked on, i’d have some things to say to myself, as well. maybe if i had said them to myself, and often, i would have heard them when things got dark for us, well, for me, because they did for a short while (which felt like an eternity). fortunately, a year has gone by now and so much has changed, mostly my perspective, and i overcame what was hard, the moo overcame his challenges too, and we made it through those couple of rough months- together. i came back to joy- not just for him but to the process of raising him too. i found my groove as a mother and not just as his mother, but as a mother in the world. as a mother in my world.

 

November 8, 2010

champagne

soon, my son will be one. real soon. a whole year he has been alive in this world and a whole year my heart has been captured, enraptured,  and disastered by my immense love for him.

a year! in many cultures, historically more so, the first birthday is when children are named- they have survived, they have  proven resilient and their lives, official now that the year has been overcome, are for real and are now safe to be acknowledged in this world. alive and thriving they are held up and celebrated without caution for the spirits and evils and illnesses and risks didn’t win and were less likely to now that a year had been graduated.

he will be one… this means so many things but the simple fact that he became real one year ago and that i was then born a mother resonates loudest to me. i’ve always wanted to be a mother, since i can remember really, and even when my mind wasn’t so inclined my body was still- i always felt an echo where my child was going to be and had a curiosity about the power of my body, unused. it’s beyond me why this tide was stronger then reason but it was and seemed to almost always have been.

the pregnant form has always delighted me. it’s just so real, so raw, so powerful, and i have always been moved by the magnitude of it. the roundness of a ripe belly is about as beautiful as anything… so simple and so basic  yet so incomprehensible somehow. i mean, are you serious? pregnant women walk around, living their lives, but they are carrying a whole little life around with them. a whole little person is being grown in those bellies. i’m still awestruck by the whole thing … it humbles me. it’s so much bigger then i don’t know what and a responsibility and a gift so much greater then most everything else.

as it happened in our story, the ache to meet my baby got so strong there was no reason left to not let the future come to us and, before we had a chance to question our readiness, i became pregnant. our baby found me and i became one of those women i’d always (impolitely) stared at.

i loved being pregnant. infact, i never felt more at home in my skin. i felt so honoured to be holding his life,  i loved knowing he was becoming his awesome little self inside me where no one could see, not even me, and that i had the capacity to share all the love i’d been toting with me in anticipation of him- it felt so time to have a place to direct all the hope of him- and i never took lightly that everything i did, or didn’t do, was now shared. feeling him move in me was, and still is, beyond words and then watching my body become someone else’s… so bizzare. i remember stepping out the shower one day, tentatively, clumsily, and, seeing myself in the mirror asking ‘who’s body is this?’. my husband didn’t answer but i knew, it was far too changed to have been mine, or his wife’s for that matter. it was my baby’s mother’s body.

and, not long after, my body complete with him, he was born… he came stubbornly, intensely, dramatically, beautifully. i made him with my body, housed him and nurtured him, and then birthed him into this great big world. all of a sudden he was no longer fiction. he was real and there we were- me, never happier, him, asleep on my skin, and my angel husband, just glowing . it only took 40 weeks of him inside and 24 hours of him trying to be freed and we became one small blissed out little family unit.

a year ago he was but a little bird in my arms- red, wrinkled, fragile, and so awkward in his transition to the living. a year ago the big guy was beaming in pride.  a year ago, i was so godsmacked about the amazing responsibility of loving and caring for his vulnerable little soul. now, he’s not so little or passive or awkward. now, he really is here. he reaches for my hand, and walks awkwardly beside me like a little boy. he laughs spontaneously when humour strikes him. he dances, a lot. he makes his little perfect body over to me and gives me kisses, lots of them, like how i shower him with kisses- like there could never be enough.

and really, there will never be enough ways to honour him or to show him love. happiest first birthday my little moo. cheers to the life we gave you and to the life you’ve given us.

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