Thursday, April 21, 2011


It's a bit early for Mother's Day, but this little teacup and rose are sitting on my dresser now, and they are a perfect and insistent reminder to me of my mom, who visited us just last week. She loves, loves roses, and she gave me that teacup - her mother's teacup, who passed away last summer.

We've have good periods and bad, just like anyone, I suppose. In the last year or two, though, we've been closer than ever, I think. And I know that much of that is due to a great effort on her part. I know that distance and difference have been especially hard trials for us, and I can't appreciate any more how much she has worked at putting them aside. I value her friendship so greatly. And I want so badly, when my own girls are grown, for them to feel I am there for them, as I know my mother still is for me.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

her birthday

I'm not sure if it's normal to spend the week before your baby's first birthday trying not to think about her too much, but I sure did. Over and over again I've said it, but Evie's first year has done nothing but flown by us all with both a speed and grace that has left me at a loss. And oh, Lord, but I love her to bits and pieces, and I could barely get through the day of her little party without falling to bits and pieces myself. So I tried not to think about how big she is already, trying to talk and run, only looking back to let us know how excited she is to round the next corner without us. Outside of the sleep deprivation inherent to babyhood, it's downright cruel to parents that the impossibly soft, impossibly small, insistently snuggling, quiet yawns, teeny toes, and kissy mouth stage has to be over so impossibly, insistently, and absolutely painfully fast.

But we had the best birthday party for her. She wore a pristine white dress and expertly christened it with lasagna and chocolate cake. Her favorite gifts were a dolly, a ball, and the giant balloons picked out by Daddy and Lena. She flirted with everyone and walked like a princess in all that tulle. Perfection.

And the next day, the day of her birthday, was quiet. So quiet and relaxed, with the excitement past, that I was able to savor my gorgeous one-year-old's sleepy warm yumminess as I rocked her down for her nap. We rocked for longer than usual that day, and I thought about the morning she was born, running the whole story through my mind in an effort to hang on to every tiny little memory. Giving birth was, to me, the most incredible experience, each time. I don't expect anything so amazing to ever happen to me again, and I want to hang on to every aspect of it for as long as I can - the excitement, the pain, the sudden belief that the removal of your body below your navel is an excellent idea, and then the realization that you have just given birth to heaven itself (and here is heaven now resting on your chest, her little heart beating fast against your own).

I'm so sad that her babyhood is ending. And of course, I am so, so happy to see her now, smiling and clapping and trying to call me mama. And I realize on these days that joy does not even begin to describe this experience of motherhood.