posted in Parenting
As soon as my son turned 9 months old people started asking me the question.
“Aren’t you sad? He’ll be one soon!”
I’d defer my answer by pointing out that he still had a few months to go, or that I wasn’t ready to think about it. But the truth was I’d been counting the days until his first birthday since around the time we first brought him home from the hospital.
I should be sad, right? Or nostalgic. That’s the answer people expect. This once-tiny baby is growing so quickly. Time is precious and it’s flying.
My answer may not be popular, but it’s honest. I’m not sad he will soon be one year old. I’m happy.
I didn’t do well with the early baby days and I’m excited to move onto this next chapter. Mind you, I’d like to freeze time right now. But I’m glad to have the past stay there. And while he will always be “my baby” he hasn’t actually been a baby for a few months now, or so it’s felt. All that’s left is for me to train my brain to call him a toddler. We’re both ready.
Of course I’ve always loved my child. But the early days were hard. Yes, we are lucky. Blessed. He was and is healthy. That doesn’t mean I’m required to enjoy the first few months we spent together.
As for missing the past or wanting to go back, you can forget it. My son had acid reflux. He screamed for approximately 21 of 24 hours a day. For four months straight. He needed to be rocked to sleep for upwards of an hour and awoke the second I set him down. He redefined cluster feeding.
I was so severely bent (not broken) by PPD. I’d try to run away. I’d head to a doctor’s appointment and tell my husband I was honestly frightened I may not come home to them, that I’d just keep driving.
I didn’t eat and was malnourished. Now I don’t have a medical degree, but I’m pretty sure I’d be diagnosed as a complete wreck. I counted down the 100 days of darkness after I was told that things would get better around that time. We even had a big star on our calendar to mark day 100. Unfortunately day 101 was no better than its predecessors.
It was around month 5 when things started to improve. It wasn’t an instant change, more like a dimmer switch that was slowly illuminating my world. My son’s reflux improved. He stopped screaming and began sleeping. I was also able to sleep — and eat, too.
I still have my bad days and struggle with PPD. Though I can confidently and happily say that now I’m actually enjoying motherhood, and it’s everything I hoped it would be. This is our sweet spot. I’m happy to be here. Proud we made it.
Don’t get me wrong, I’d like to go back and cuddle that tiny babe. And then hand him over at the witching hour. We are where we were meant to be. Right now and moving forward.
I’m not sad about his birthday. The future is wide open and our lives are a blank canvas that will be soon covered with adventure, travels, spilled food, love, tears and life. Run, play, learn and grow, my sweet child. You are so loved.
For more of my mom shenanigans follow me on Instagram at Witty Otter.
How did you feel on your child’s first birthday? Were you excited for the next stage, or feeling bittersweet?
Images by Becky Vieira
The post My baby’s turning 1 and I’m not the least bit sad or nostalgic appeared first on BabyCenter Blog.