For once, I do not feel compelled to offer excuses for a lengthy absence from posting: I am sure that you know quite well where I’ve been. For the last three weeks, we’ve been completely immersed within the realm of diaper changes and midnight feedings and undisturbed clutter on every surface of every bit of furniture in our entire house. While some of you can imagine this, I am sure that others remember it all to clearly.
Though people told me constantly throughout my pregnancy that parenthood would change my life so much (and I believed them, I really did), I suspected, and rightfully so, that the truth of that statement wouldn’t sink in until I’d experienced for myself what it was to mother a brand-new being.
They were right. My life has changed so much.
But in all the chatter about dirty diapers and sleepless nights and undone chores, only a handful of people thought to mention the small things that, so far, have made this intense time joyful: the sweet-smelling, soft skin of my daughter, the transformation of my husband into a father, the remarkable milestones that Lydia reaches each day as each day she’s a completely different baby who grows at a seemingly impossible speed.
Already, her body is filling out and creasing into pleasant, dimpled rolls; already her legs are un-kinking from their fetal pose and her eyes, every day, are more focused, a darker brown. Through all the struggle of learning to breastfeed (really, does anyone have any good tips for getting a kid who won’t open her mouth to latch on? Because, ouch) there are still those moments when Lydia falls asleep, milk-drunk and tipsy, in my arms, breathing into my ear and chuckling to herself in her sleep.
Just as no one can describe the emotional crash that comes as all those pregnancy hormones leave the building, it’s true that those moments of watching my daughter’s head turn to follow the sound of my husband’s voice are wholly indescribable. For every time I’ve teared up in frustration or exhaustion or sorrow over the course of the last three weeks, there’s been another time when the plain joy and beauty of being a mother to this particular child, with this particular man, strikes me and I cry because I am in awe of how much I have changed, how much we have changed.
Our lives have changed so much.