It’s official. We kept the baby alive for a whole year with no major hospital visits or emergencies. Well, none other than the typical-nervous-first-time-parent trip to the pediatrician after he bumped his head when he was 9 days old. But that wasn’t even our fault!
A lot has happened in the past 365 days. (It’s actually 366 days because this year was a Leap Year, but Leap Years are stupid so they don’t count.) For the first time in my life, I can see how different I am today than I was a year ago. Change is normally much more gradual with vague, indeterminate starting and ending points. But adding a baby to your life is a sure way to create some pretty abrupt and permanent changes in who you are and how you live your life.
I miss spontaneity. I miss being able to just pick up and go whenever I want. I miss opening a bottle of wine and knowing that it will be empty in a few hours, and I’ll be sleeping in in the morning. I miss sleeping in. I miss going to the movies three or four times a month. I miss being selfish. I miss the freedom and flexibility I used to enjoy. I miss traveling without a diaper bag in tow. But, for everything I miss about my old life, there are a hundred things that I would have missed if that little man had never come along.I would have missed the feeling of pure, unadulterated love the first time he smiled at me.
I would have missed the anticipation and excitement as he gets so close to saying “mama” for the first time.
I would have missed the warmth of feeling his little body weigh against mine as he falls asleep in my arms.
I would have missed the early morning cuddles that involved endless smiles and cuddles and coos.
I would have missed my husband becoming a father and loving our little boy with a fierceness I’ve never seen.I would have missed this crazy, chaotic, unpredictable, frustrating, rewarding ride that they call “motherhood.”
Becoming a parent means you give up a lot in life. It can be hard to say goodbye to the life you once lived, and you’ll find yourself missing that girl late on Friday nights when you know you should be in bed because your little one will be waking up early on Saturday morning. But, come Saturday morning when you hear your little one playing in his crib and waiting for you to lift him up into your arms, that person you used to be and the life you used to have doesn’t seem to have had it so good after all.