California Family Photography
Pregnant by the Sea
A letter to my midwife
PHOTO CREDITS: Flaura George, doula. Santa Cruz, CA
I was meant to be your mother
January 20th, 2013 – It was about 4:30 pm, I found myself running through the house looking for every single item I’d plan we may need to take out for your first walk. It was then when I realized it wasn’t about the carrier, the jacket, or the blanket; it was the fact that we were still so new at this, and you, well, we were celebrating your 1st week of life.
It was also your first sunset and in a way it was for us as well, a whole new life, a whole new family. We were struggling trying to figure out if your legs were ok being so cramped in the carrier…or if a little bit of cold air would do you any harm…or if you would get too warm wearing your winter jacket. That day now seems so far away, it happened so fast, people always say “they grow so fast” and even though it sounds cliche, it is so shockingly true.
During that first week I learned that a newborn can already smile at day two, that love can simply burst out in one small moment, the kind of love that you can’t explain or imagine and that there are still moments in my adult life that make me feel like Christmas morning. Our life had just gotten so much better and so much scarier. I immediately knew I wasn’t the same, no more survival trips, no more extreme sports without helmets, no more traveling to scary places, no more voluntary uncertainty. For the first time in 8 years together, David and I were settled, had a “home town,” and were planning on becoming home owners.
So there we were, in front of the sunset staring at a sleeping you instead of the horizon, trying to figure out who this sweet little boy would become. For myself I could at last tell that I knew exactly who I was, that all these years had brought me to the moment where I could happily tell you “I was meant to be your mother”, that every lesson I learned in life made more sense now.
As I write this, 1 year later, you are taking your morning nap. I keep tearing over the keyboard hoping that one day many years from now you’ll also tear when reading this.
Who have you become so far? In all honesty, you are not the easiest kid to mother; you still do not sleep through the night and refuse to take a bottle, added to that that you are too strong for a baby your age, very hard to tame…you don’t like to be told what to do or how to do it, stubborn like both of your parents. You have the sweetest little cry, you are very chatty and active but rather shy with other kids. 3 months ago you started giving me kisses on request, you go absolutely NUTS over bath time and pop-up books. Every morning you wake me up, often with a cry, but always turn to this amazingly cute cuddly baby that gives smiles and hugs. You have the need to scratch any surface and to pet my hair and your dad’s beard, love playing chase, and waving your hands when you approve of something. These last couple of weeks you’ve been nodding your head “NO”, constantly calling out for “Dada”, although when you are upset you usually want “mama.” You like to hang out on stairs going up and down non stop and for the longest time you would NOT breastfeed in public. You have such a contagious laugh and are always creating sound effects for every move you take or game you play. Some of your favorite foods are pickles, zucchini, and carrots, but for some reason you don’t quite get fruits. You are so cute I can’t believe you are mine, your eyes, your crazy scientist hair, your smile…
Soon you’ll be walking, and with that I know that every single step will be in the opposite direction of us, just to follow whatever it is you want to lick, explore, and be. Life will take you further and further away from being our baby, you’ll move out of my bed, stop needing my smell to sleep, will want to play with other kids all the time, and having us around will eventually seem lame…I am so in awe seeing you grow, thank you for coming into our lives, you are so much more amazing than any dream I ever had!