My daughter E. turned one on 11-12. One?! How did that happen? I am not exaggerating when I say it feels like I gave birth to her a week ago. Being a mom has been infinitely more challenging than I could have ever imagined. I have doubted my skills pretty much every second for the past 365 days. I cried like I never cried prior the day we checked out of the hospital fearing that I would not know what I was doing (I didn’t), but the nurse comforted me by saying, ‘It’s the mom’s that cry when they are leaving that I know will be good mother’s.’ I am sure she says the opposite to those that don’t cry but it comforted me and it got me out of the hospital and here I am a year later.
I was hoping that I could do a sort of recap of my year, but it’s been kind of a blur, my once elephant like memory seems to have evaporated. Highlights though I may be able to do–hearing her call my name for the first time was pretty much like winning the Lotto, she calls me ‘mom or mum’ depending on how she’s enunciating that day. Yes, I think it’s weird too that she doesn’t call me ‘mama’, but she calls her dad ‘bah’, so I’ll take mom/mum. She isn’t walking yet, but she does have a wagon that she pushes around like a pro, sometimes our 5 lb pup George will even join her for a jaunt around the living room. She just started dancing and I think my heart will explode from the cuteness of that. E. spends most of her waking hours trying to make everyone laugh, if I didn’t witness it myself I would say that it was hogwash, but if she does something once that will illicit a laugh she will file it in her arsenal to bring out at a later date. She has the best belly laugh ever. I have learned so much about being a mom and about myself this year. I have been pushed to my limits both physically and mentally (sleep deprivation is serious business), but at the end of the day when all she wants is to cuddle and have me hold her one last time before going to bed I feel complete. Motherhood is definitely not for everyone, if someone would have laid out everything for me, I may have opted out, it is the hardest thing I have ever done. I foolishly (and maybe arrogantly) assumed I would be good at it, but there is so much more to it that I could have never fathomed. Both my husband and I were woefully unprepared with how much love we would have for her, it almost hurts it’s so overwhelmingly huge. It has made me re-evaluate everything in my life, my relationships, especially with my parents. I have so much more empathy for them, but I also have been secretly a little judgmental, I can’t help it. I feel inadequate a lot of the time and also selfish (I’m older and we have very little family), but around E. I try to just be present, she’s my little Buddha, I find myself uncharacteristically savoring the moment.
For her first birthday she gave my husband and I a most appreciated and unforgettable gift–she slept through the night! After nearly 12 months of fragmented sleep, a 12 hour stretch was the most unexpected, appreciated and thoughtful gift I have ever received (besides my 5 lb. pup George). Thank you all for your support and kind words during this turbulent (and exciting) time in my life, your visits here, your kind notes, bon mots, and wisdom helped me in ways I can not find words to express. I am humbled by all the mom’s that have come before me. I have the utmost gratitude for everyone that has visited this last year, I needed you more than you could have ever known as I transitioned into this new identity. It wasn’t seamless, I faltered, stopped and started but thank you for sticking with me (and now us), Michelle and I can not wait to move forward with some grand plans and I am finally feeling a little more confident in my role as mom/mum, (but I am still open to advice/feedback). We both hope that this next chapter will be as exciting as we have imagined in our heads (one never knows) and that you find us worthy to continue following our adventures as we plan to continue to take you along with us!
photo by michelle p.
Miss Tristan B. is the proprietress of Besotted Brand and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. She lives in sunny Seattle with her handsome husband, wonderful baby girl and two pups. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.