Through pregnancy and this first year of parenting, we’ve heard a lot of advice and cautionary tales, warning us of what to expect. Seasoned paroents sharing stories, attempting to vet us and prepare us, I suppose. However, it did everything but prepare us, and in the end, it left us questioning why these “been there, done that” parents were so discouraging to parents-to-be.
them: “How is pregnancy?”
us: “Great, just ready to be done.”
them: “Oh, don’t say that, being pregnant is so easy compared to having a newborn.”
them: “Is she sleeping through the night?”
us: “Not yet, but we’re adjusting.”
them: “Just wait until she’s a teenager, then you’ll really know what it’s like to be tired.”
them: “Is she walking yet?”
us: “No, but she keeps me busy enough as it is.”
them: “Just wait until you have two, you’ll realize how easy you had it with one.”
Yes, Winnie changed our lives. Babies have a funny way of doing that. However, we aren’t inconvenienced. We aren’t wishing her to be different/older/younger/quieter. We love who she is, including the sometimes exceptionally loud, always on the move person that she is. We have never wished away any of the days, weeks, or months, and we’ve never complained about the changes she has brought into our lives. Of course, we loved sleeping in before we had her, but we don’t miss it. Of course, we loved the convenience of being lazy on the couch for an entire afternoon, but those lazy days are replaced by bursting hearts and busy hands, so it was a worthy trade, for sure.
In hopes of changing perception for first-time parents and parents-to-be, I want to offer these words instead…
just wait until delivery… they’ll hand her to you and you’ll learn a new love in an instant – it will take your breath away.
just wait until you hold her nose-to-nose with you and you breathe in her sweet, warm breath… you’ll be bursting with life.
just wait until you’re tracing her soft skin and she opens her eyes, looking right at you… you’ll share an understanding of the journey you took to find each other, and it will overwhelm you.
just wait until you’re so exhausted that it’s all you can do to keep your eyes open… you’ll put her in her bed and fight sleep with all of your might in order to sit and stare at her just a little longer.
just wait until she bumps her head when crawling and immediately looks to you with tears forming in her eyes… you’ll realize in that moment that, of all the wonderful things you’ve done in this world, the most important will be loving her, kissing her boo-boo’s, and mending her broken heart.
savor every moment… it’s ok to be upset or even downright distraught during the difficult days, but never take it for granted because just wait… one day, you’ll be holding your snuggling baby, basking in her peacefulness and the next day, she’ll be on the move. And those snuggles… those snuggles will be fewer, but goodness, they will be far sweeter.
Just wait… parenthood will change you in the best of ways. It will be difficult, but it will be beautiful. Oh, it will be so beautiful.