Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Small Things

The friend I wrote about back in July of 2012 - the one who had been trying even longer than us and was finally pregnant - is in hospital being induced right now.

She went in on Saturday and, as of last night, had not had the baby yet. I'm jumping at every text alert, checking Facebook obsessively and wondering if today is the day she finally gets to hold her child. It's my dad's 77th birthday today and it's also my best friend's birthday so I reckon 6th March is a good day for this very welcome little one to arrive.

I'm thinking back to my own experience of childbirth and becoming a mum (so far, quite similar to hers) and how it took me a while to feel the joy of it. I kind of hinted at this to her - I wish someone had told me that it was normal to find the first few months so hard. Needless to say, I wondered if it was me, if I was too old, too late, whether it was the fact I'd used donor eggs. Actually, it just turned out I was really tired and slightly in shock. As time went by, I settled in to it all and one day found that it really was wonderful after all - extraordinarily hard work but wonderful too.

As the two years and two months have gone by since my son's birth, sometimes the big things have felt slightly flat. First Christmas - both of us ill and me in crisis with my work. First birthday - same holiday, same issues. First trip away - I slept in the bottom part of a bunk bed with him and my husband slept in another. First tooth - slightly eclipsed by the fact it was discovered during a hospital appointment that confirmed he had reflux and I'd not been aware of it. First crawl - while my husband and I were out and grandparents had him. First steps - missed those too.

What I'd like to tell my friend, I realise, is not to stress about these supposedly important events. In being a mother, it's actually the small stuff that counts: getting up at 3am to rock them back to sleep, finding the things they'll want to eat and are also good for them, that kind of thing.

And sometimes, it's the small stuff that knocks you sideways and reminds you that all of that waiting and hoping paid off.
Stepping on a piece of lego - you have toys on your floor!
Seeing little plates and cutlery with your own in the washing-up pile.
Finding that your Am.azon recommendations are full of picture books.
Hearing a wee voice calling for you as you wake in the morning.
It happened - you're a parent - at last.

3 comments:

nogoodeggs said...

This is such a sweet and important post - thanks for sharing! Us DE/IVFers often wonder what will make us a parent - and you summed it up so beautifully!

Journey Girl said...

Oh I am SO happy for your friend!! You are totally right about it being the little things. I love being the one to know where JBB's tickliest spot is so I can make him laugh at any time. I love that he snuggles into me when he's tired and we watch the Wiggles (and I don't roll my eyes at them). I love opening the drawer and see his Thomas and Wiggles plates and cups. There are a million things a day that make life great.

Rebecca said...

Very true, it is all about the small things. The ladies at day care keep telling me about Alexa's "firsts", and I keep wishing they wouldn't. But I've decided that it doesn't count until I see it. :-)

I can't believe it's been more than 2 years since your son was born! Where has the time gone?

Anyway, it sounds like you're doing well. I'm glad to see an update from you.