Thursday, January 30, 2014

On Babies

It's starting to happen.  My eyes linger a little too long on a swollen belly.  I crane my neck to peer awkwardly into a pram so that I can see the tiny tiny.  I miss the warm scent of milk that wafts up through the neck of my shirt.  

I finally feel like myself again.  Of course I have my battle wounds--let's face it--certain body parts will NEVER be the same again.  But! I have worked on the parts that I can change, tighten, make a bit better, and I am more than satisfied at where I have landed the third time around.

I thought after the third baby I would never be thin again, but I am surprised to find that I am even thinner than after my first baby.  I have no idea why…I think it is because I finally weaned and so I am not as hungry anymore, and I have to keep track of 3 children and that is high metabolism inducing behavior.

Pants that were barely buttoning are now loose, I do not require a bra, and my love handles have calmed down a bit.

I like the feeling of running without jiggling and easily buttoning those pants.  I like feeling proportioned and tall and lean.  I like 7 solid hours of sleep.  I like the feeling of holding a newborn and nursing the baby and giving part of myself up for another.  These "likes"cannot coexist.  I cannot have one with the other.  

I watch people have babies 2 years apart.  I observe the 16 month gap and my eyes bug out.  My baby is just now 19 months old and I FINALLY feel whole again.  And some of my friends with babies the same age ALREADY have a baby or are expecting another!  I admit, around 8 months, when the baby starts getting fun and I have gotten used to my aftermath body,  the thought of another baby sometimes crosses the synapses.  But I just can't pull the trigger on that chaos.

Today I am asking myself: How do women like me ever stop having babies?  The happiest, highest years of my life have been 0-12 months of my 3 daughters' lives.  I am a very content, happy, peaceful, joyful mother of a newborn baby.  I think I may be a rarity.  I think some women with more than 2 children might be in the same camp with me.  So, when I have my last baby, will I know it?  After 19 months, will I NOT feel that urge, that pull, that desire to have that peace and joy and miracle in my life again?  

I thought it was the end for me after 2 and I really never got over it.  Will I always carry sorrow in my heart that it's over?  Will I always look back and feel a sense of loss because that precious first year (x3) is over, and never will be again?

Even when my tweens scream at each other in the next room and I look at Jason and say: "As soon as this is over, it will begin again."   And even when the sweetness of Pickle is also so bitter because I know tomorrow it will be over and time will play it's trick on me and I will blink and she will have learned another new word, or how to jump, or yell: "Mama!" for the first time.  Even through all the pain that mothering is, I want more. I want more.


  1. YES. THIS. Every word. I totally get it.

  2. I totally understand. My fourth is almost 11 months, and my middle son just turned 3. (Others are 11 and 7). The two year gap was SO hard, but I just love babies. Even without sleep, with nursing around the clock, with everything. I also wonder if I will ever feel done...