Ode to the Babies and new mommies, still learning all the ropes;
Hunger cries and diaper changes you’re filled with dreams and hopes;
Enjoy this time when they are little, still cooing, smiling and drooling,
The sleep deprivation and endless buttons are nothing compared to their future fooling.
They start to crawl and then walk, and run away as fast as their legs will move them,
You run after, frantic and grab their hand, trying calmly not to scare them.
And oh when they begin to talk, you cheer and clap and smile!
But then it’s three or five years later and they haven’t stopped the whole while.
Bedtime used to be such bliss, a bath, a book, a snuggle and a kiss,
But then it’s “I need a drink, my pillow isn’t right, I need that or I need this”,
The endless hours you spend explaining things, the who’s, the what’s, the why’s,
And not just once, oh no you don’t, they’ll ask a million times.
It used to be so easy, to make such nice small meals,
No questions, just the food I cooked, and oh the hunger squeals,
But now it doesn’t matter, they want something else than my proffer,
I beg and plead, even threaten dessert, they just cross their arms at every offer.
I look back at the all the times I complained about the baby stages,
The late night feedings, harsh crying and endless reading of baby book pages.
The toddlers are a wonder, constant curiosity and awe,
At the world that you’ve created for their little minds so raw,
This time things are still working in your mommy favor,
But beware of the three and five year olds – they change their daily flavor.
This parenting thing is a constant battle of balance and struggle of wills,
Some days you look back and wonder, before this where did I get my thrills?
But at the end of each day, you know in your heart just where everything fits,
You can’t imagine your life without your darling little shits…
Yesterday I had the privilege of meeting my dearest friend’s newest bundle of joy, born just last Thursday. Still so small, wrapped up tight and needing only to eat, sleep and be held, I felt the tug in my heart that only a new baby can bring to a seasoned mom. My kids bring me joy every day, but let’s get real. The days when they were tiny and could only get from here to there in my arms or the stroller and never had anything mean to say because they couldn’t talk yet were some of the good ‘ol days. I wasn’t a broken record yet, I could make them anything to eat and they would just eat it because they were hungry. The days when the bedtime routine didn’t have to start an hour before bed, dawdling was something that only my grandmother did when we were late and no one challenged my authority and an hourly basis. My teenage rebellious years come flooding back to me every time my strong willed daughter flat out tells me no or completely ignores everything I say in a five minute stretch. Last year, I actually apologized to my own mother – for everything. I mean for everything I ever said, did, or thought that was disrespectful, rude or blatantly disobedient. I don’t know if there is enough wine on planet earth to get me through the teenage years that lie ahead of me and my 2 very strong willed daughters. Pray for me is all I ask.
Over the weekend, I briefly caught up with a cousin that is a new mom of a beautiful 7 month old baby girl. She looked tired and admitted as much, reminding me of the time in my life that I remember like yesterday (but honestly sometimes I don’t remember yesterday). Interrupted sleep every night, juggling and balancing a job and a baby and child care. Counting down the days to the weekend or the next break or vacation. The time in a new mom’s life has challenges unbeknownst to the best of us and our doting husbands. And when she gets to a point when things get a little easier with her one – she’ll get pregnant again and the whole cycle will start over. And then she’ll have two. I smile and nod and listen and my heart aches for her but I know it will get better and the challenges now will seem so small compared to what lies ahead for her (and for myself when I really think about it). Because I know, my three and five year old will someday be ten and twelve, thirteen and fifteen and I will look back on this time and laugh at my complaining and wish for this time back.
Face your challenges head on, for you know that soon enough you’ll look back and wonder what you were so afraid of…be strong new moms and seasoned moms.