Sunday, January 27, 2019: I’m still deciding whether it was the best or the worst day of my life. Maybe it was both. In any case, at the end of the day there was a new small human on the planet, and we were parents to a beautiful son. (On this website he remains anonymous to prevent these ramblings from his mother showing up in Google in future).
However good or bad the day was, in retrospect it was also my last day of freedom.
Pooping or vacuum cleaning
If I ever thought about life with a baby, I thought it would be basically the same as during my pregnancy. I always had Y. with me, and I determined whether we went cycling, exercising, vacuuming, or if we quickly popped into the supermarket after a day’s work. My imagination did not go much further than exchanging my bike for a push chair on the bus. O blissful naivety … Now that Y. has made its entrance into the world, we are still always together, but the roles have been thoroughly reversed. He determines where the priorities lie, and after drinking, pooping and curiously looking around (which is apparently only possible on the arm of an adult), ‘sleep for my parents’ dangles at the bottom of that list. Did I ever say anything about babies being enlightened, selfless souls?
Purpose of what life?
Of course, the little dictator is more than entitled to our time and attention, our hugs, kisses and breast milk. And the advantage is that I can throw my own to do lists away and I don’t have to worry about the purpose of my life for a couple of years. If things occasionally get on top of me during a sleepless night or if I look around in despair at piles of washing up, the dirty litter box, and a thousand other chores that I would otherwise ‘just’ do, I know we are a team and can do anything together: Freddy (nappies, comforting, cooking, cleaning, etc. etc.) Y. (smiles, naps, general cuteness) and me (feeding, eating, writing blogs?). All the cards, visits and presents that we received provide a celebratory backdrop that is also good for our morale.
For me, the step from pregnancy to baby was only really made when Y. and I were in church last Sunday. A few weeks ago I had to reach over my huge belly to receive communion, and now Y. was greeted by all those lovely people who have been waiting for him for so long. Of course he slept through everything, because the liturgy was just as familiar to him as it was to me. The words that always vibrated in my belly now sounded all around him: “Though we are many, we are one body, because we all share in one bread”.
I started out on this adventure without a clue of what it was going to be like. But I’m not doing it alone.