When I was pregnant with Gwen, I often lamented over the fact that I feared I wouldn’t be able to enjoy her in the same way I had been able to enjoy her big sister. I worried that because I also had a toddler to chase and would have limited one on one, quiet time with the baby, that somehow, the relationship we developed through her infancy would be less intimate, less close and less enjoyable.
Boy, was I wrong.
Here we are almost eight weeks in and let me tell you, I am enjoying this baby to the fullest.
Dare I say, I may even be enjoying her infancy more than I did Evalyn’s. When I look back on Evalyn’s early days, I look back with fondness. I loved those days. But, at the same time, they were hard. Many days, I was wracked with anxiety, uncertainty and stress. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. And it’s not to say that there haven’t been bad days since Gwen was born or that I’m an expert now, but I just feel so laid back this time around.
With Eva, I was so concerned about the sleeping thing, so nervous that she would never ever fall asleep on her own that I feel like I didn’t hold her, cuddle her, snuggle her near enough. I worried that if I let her go too long between feeds, she’d starve. If I didn’t wait until it had been three full hours, she’d nurse every hour for the rest of her life. If she slept in my bed, she’d never like her crib. If she missed a nap, the night would be ruined. I worried so much about these things, that I feel like we missed out, just a little bit. Since I blinked and she transformed from a tiny baby to an almost two year old, I know how fast these days go. Despite the fact that some days may be long, the moments are fleeting and the months and years zoom on past.
I won’t let Gwennie’s babyness disappear before my eyes without taking every chance I get to soak up every little bit of her. So that means on days like yesterday – when the fridge breaks and I need to clean the downstairs fridge to get it ready to be moved upstairs but it’s impossible to do because she only wants to sleep being held in my arms or in the ergo, or when the laundry doesn’t get folded until 11 pm, or dinner barely makes it to the table – it means on days like those, I let it all go, and I snuggle. I hold. I cuddle. And instead of getting worked up about all that is not getting done, I focus on feeling her sweet little heart beating pressed up against mine. I close my eyes and sniff in the newborn scent that I know will disappear to quickly. I stroke her little tufts of hair that I know will become pig tails before too long. I cherish the stillness and the cuddles and the tiny little human laying beside me.
Because I know that I will turn away for a second and when I turn back, she will be running around, keeping up with her big sister and I will be willing her to slow down, to stop, to climb up on my lap and cuddle. Just for a second.
So for now, the rest can wait.
Because for now, sweet Gwen, I am enjoying you.