Wow, what a year it has been. At this time last year it was still sinking in that I was finally pregnant. Life was great, even though I was so scared of losing the pregnancy. At this time we were getting very close to that precious 14 week mark where the chances of miscarrying drop drastically. I was preparing to share the exciting news with everyone, although I was afraid that by sharing it we were jinxing it.
Onto 2010. It has been the best year of my life! While I dealt with some morning sickness, exhaustion, and a few weeks of bed rest due to threatened pre-term labor, all in all my pregnancy went smoothly. I was due on 7/21, but I went 4 days overdue. The doctor had finally scheduled an induction because she didn't want me to go too long overdue, but thankfully I went into labor on my own before our induction date. Thankfully, because I really didn't want to be induced. I'll post the birth story at a later time, but suffice it to say it was an amazing experience. I cried when they laid our new baby girl on my chest. I couldn't believe we'd finally done it - we finally had a baby. She was healthy and had 10 fingers and 10 toes! It was such an amazing experience!!
I have realized this year that I never really knew what love was. I did not understand what it meant to love someone so much that I would throw myself under a bus to protect her. This little tiny person that started out at 7 pounds 2 ounces has taken my heart and now grasps it in her little hands. As she has grown (now around 14 pounds) she simply grasps it more tightly. In all her giggles, smiles and talking she lets me know that she will never, EVER give it back. Know what? I'm OK with that!
As the days pass, I have realized that the best thing to wake up to in the morning, even if it is only 3am and is the third... fourth... fifth time you have awakened, is the gummy little grin that shines upon that little face when she sees her mama coming to get her. She shares it every morning, and every morning it makes me melt. I will never tire of it.
I realize that there is nothing like seeing that gummy smile for the very first time. Nothing grabs at your heart more than the first giggle, the first time you hear her voice, and the first time you realize that she has figured out volume with that voice. There is nothing that grosses me out anymore. I've been spit up on, pooped on, peed on, snotted on. Every bodily fluid you can imagine has come out of this precious little being and made it's way onto me and my clothes. I hardly even notice. It makes me smile a little when I realize at lunch time that I've been walking around with spit up on my shoulder all day. Blow out diapers? No problem!
I realize that the want to ensure the safety of my little girl outweighs everything. All those heels I love sit at work and get put on when I get there, and come off when I leave. So I can wear flats when I carry her into and out of our home, which involves stairs. The bruises on my legs are nothing, even though when I see them I know they came from carrying her in her car seat. And that flabby tummy that I still have? It's not much, but it's enough to make all my pre-pregnancy pants fit just a little too snug and leave me with a little muffin top. But I don't care, because that's just one of my mommy scars. In fact, I wish I still had the negra line down my tummy. It's a sign of the most precious little girl in my life and where she came from.
I have learned to live with exhaustion that could take down a herd of elephants for an entire week. I have learned that even if mama is running a fever and sick as a dog, somewhere there comes an inhuman strength to continue to care for my Bug because dada is out of town for work.
I have learned that a mama kiss can dry tears, bring about smiles and giggles. I have learned that I can nourish my baby by simply putting her to my breast, and that the bond it builds is not just for her, but also for me. I have learned that a baby massage can help calm an overtired baby. I have learned the way to hold my bug depending on what she wants and needs at that moment.
I have learned what cry means I am hungry, I am tired, I am wet, I need you or I need alone time.
I have learned that I cannot always do it all by myself. I have to ask for help sometimes, even when I have in the past been too proud to ask. I have learned that being a good mama sometimes means asking for that help, because a happy healthy mama equals a happy health baby.
I have learned to write down questions for the doctor, and not to be afraid to call them. I remember to ask those questions!
I have learned to not judge other people's situations with their children, or parenting styles. Everyone is different, and does what works for them and their children. Everyone's situation is different.
I have learned that no one can ever prepare you for the joys and sorrows of motherhood. I realize that as she gets older I will find new joys and sorrows that I cannot prepare for. I like knowing that I am in a sisterhood that has millions of members, but is exclusive.
I have learned that the wait was worth it. I have learned that infertility cannot overtake me. I have learned that during all those times that I almost gave up, but refused because I wanted to experience this so badly were all so worth it. The pain, dispair, heartache, ups and downs, were all worth it.
I have watched my husband become the father I have always known he would be, was meant to be. I have seen the love shine in his eyes and know that everything I have felt and been through this year is reflected in his own pain and joys. I have learned why I love him all over again, and again, and again. I have seen gentleness in his touch that makes me want to weep tears of joy. I have seen the way he can rock our little girl when she doesn't feel well and calm her down, while she looks up at him with a complete sense of security.
I have learned that communication is key. Remaining calm and talking through everything helps make it all better. Realizing that you will not always agree with your spouse. That's OK too.
I think this sums up motherhood:
“Making the decision to have a child-it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.”
So bring it on 2011, I can take whatever you bring to me. And when you possibly bring the realities of dealing with infertility again, I will not let you become a ruined, want to forget you year. I will embrace you as I embrace my little Bug (and K of course), with love, hope and excitement. With the knowledge that I can make it through anything and come out in one piece. That with Gods help, he will lead me down the road I am meant to be on.
I love you K. I love you Bug. With you and God, I can and will, do anything.
Happy New Year!