i have a one month old baby. how this happened i'll never know. because yesterday we brought her home from the hospital and today she is a month old. excuse me, what?? florence, you must stop growing up so fast.
it's funny to me now thinking about the few days after we brought her home. i was more overwhelmed than i ever imagined i would be. i cried every evening as we sat down for dinner, like clockwork. i started feeling anxious as it got dark out. and i would feel helpless every time she would cry. breastfeeding still hurt a lot and i had no appetite and no energy. and we ended up going to the pediatrician 4 out of the 5 days that week. i was under the incorrect assumption that after 9 months of sharing my body with someone else, i'd get it back now. and then i realized that my body was still entirely hers for the taking. the worst part was that i didn't feel a huge bond to her yet. and i felt guilty about not feeling a huge bond to her. i loved her, i really did. but mostly i felt like she was this little creature that needed me 24/7 and i wasn't really sure how or what to do. and even when i did, i didn't always want to do it. and that's just the truth friends. i was scared and felt nervous and trapped.
then suddenly after that first week, something just kicked in and it all felt slightly more manageable. she fell into a 3 hour feeding rhythm pretty quickly, was only waking up for one middle of the night for a meal, and was somehow gaining about 1.5 ounces a day. guess my boobs aren't making 1%. and newborn clothes are a joke.
now, at a month out, that first week seems lifetimes away. i feel like i really know her now. i feel such a closeness and bond with her even at her most needy moments--especially in those moments actually. i know the difference between a hungry cry, a tired cry, and a "i don't want to take this nap in my crib i want to take it on your chest" (!!!) cry. i adore her little poop face--lips pursed and nostrils flared. i know that she loves to have her head and nose rubbed and that her feet are ticklish like her papa's. i know how to help get rid of her hiccups (12 times a day). i can interpret most of her little mannerisms and can respond to them. and i think everything she does is the most precious thing that's ever been done.
she is my daughter, and it finally feels like it.
(pause to go check on crying daughter.)
it's true that becoming a mother happens in an instant. but really becoming a mother doesn't. at least not for me. it took me a month of learning her. learning to have patience with myself. learning all over again how to die to self. and learning how to have confidence in a role that God, in His wisdom, gave to me.
miss florence, you bring me joy. so much, so much joy. happy first month of life. now, will you just quit growing up quite so quickly?