Baby is teething. Mama is struggling to accomplish more than the bare minimum. It’s just one of those weeks at the Stewart household. But….Parenthood is back! (If you’re not excited about this, I don’t know what to say.)
Something odd happened to me during this week’s season premier episode.
I started to identify with the adults.
Technically, I’ve been an adult for 8 years. Committed to marriage for nearly 5 years. Have a Master’s degree. I’ve noticed, though, that I have a difficult time seeing myself as “one of the adults.” It’s not that I behave like an adolescent; in fact, I’ve been weirdly responsible and sensible (read: boring) since childhood. I just don’t feel like an adult. Watching a show with the family dynamics of Parenthood, I’m still more likely to empathize with the kids and think the parents are a little over-the-top.
Watching those parents preparing to send their oldest daughter off to college on the other side of the country, though, something just shifted. My heart said, “!!!!!!!!!!” If you can’t translate exclamation points, that means, “Oh no! My daughter is going to leave one day, too! No! Not my baby! Don’t leave me! Ah! My baby!”
And now I’m a crazy lunatic mother who can already envision the day we will move to the city Caroline chooses for college. Someone help me.
Five months ago today, I walked into a hospital just after daybreak. I was teary signing in–anxious and overwhelmed. Within just two hours, I saw you. And I recognized you, as if I had always known you, as if your face had forever been a part of my memory.
Caroline : 5 Months
You’ve grown wildly the past few weeks. You roll and scoot and twist along the floor, no longer contained by the small blankets I lay down. You officially conquered your swaddle. Last night was your first night without it, and you quickly rolled over onto your stomach and slept through the night. You babble and coo constantly; I think you may be a talker like your aunt.
We battle over naptime most days. You squirm and screech when you begin to fall asleep sometimes, but you usually settle down for me.
There’s a rhythm to our days now. Long morning walks, playtime in the floor, afternoon nap, evenings outside so you can look at the trees. Then there are days where it doesn’t work that way at all, and that’s okay.
I realize you’ll never remember the moments that make up these days, weeks, and months, but I hope someday you know how much joy it gives me to be the one rocking you each day, changing almost every diaper, giving almost every meal, watching the subtle changes in your behavior and laugh.
I love you. I love you. I love you.
On days like today, when my cuddly little one has transformed into a squirmy, screeching nap-fighter, I’m grateful for the memory of days like this past Saturday.
I burrowed into the bed while my husband attended to baby-waking-up duties. That in itself was a promising start to the day. The three of us lingered around the house, doors open to the surprisingly crisp air, no immediate plans. Coffee, cleaning, lounging. Then we took the babe and picked pears from two trees on my in-laws’ property. It was one of those fun things you always talk about doing but never actually get out and do, but Saturday we did.
Then, that evening I helped with the ministry launch and book release of a dear friend. I’m looking forward to sharing more about the ministry and her incredibly Biblical, practical, and encouraging book. But right now, a dirty, neglected kitchen is calling my name.