Three months? Has it truly been three months?
Are you really this big?
Apparently. It's not that it has gone by quickly. It really hasn't. It's that it still seems somewhat impossible to accept that I am a mother, and that I have been for three whole months, and that you are a real flesh-and-blood three-month old little person for whom I am totally responsible. There are moments, almost every day, where I stop and think, "Really? How did this happen?"
No, you were not in the plans. No, you weren't expected.
But holy cow, are you loved.
Big, big, big-time loved.
It's a big love that gets bigger every day. Of course, we have always loved you, our son. But this past month, as you began interacting and smiling and cooing like craaaaaaaaazy, you seriously made our hearts do somersaults. You kill me, every day, with your big I-still-don't-know-what-color they-are eyes and your hilarious expressions. Often, I'd say you look concerned. Concerned and perplexed, like you are trying to order the universe but your brain is failing you. Give it time, pumpkin pie. You'll get there.
Right now, I just want you to know that you are wholly and completely adored. Can you feel that? I believe you can. When I nurse you, you sigh so softly and so contently that I believe you must know. I try to imagine what it must feel like to be so tiny and to be held so tightly and to feel enfolded up against someone who is protecting you and nourishing you. I'd guess it feels wonderful, and I know unequivocally that being on the opposite end is my new definition of happiness. I hold you and nurse you and I could not care less that the economy is in the tank, that there is a historic presidential race happening, that there are all sorts of issues to be worried about, that Project Runway's on the tube. There's nothing in those moments but your tiny hand clenching my finger and your big eyes peering up at me and your little mouth churning away.
This past month was marked with all sorts of growth. One day, while you were watching your cherished Buckeye mobile spin, you discovered your hands. I came in to find you clasping them together in front of you as you quizzically stared them down. That same day, you seemed to notice your feet as you sat on my lap and bounced them on my stomach. You no longer need me to help you hold your head up. Your repertoire of sounds has tripled from a few grunts to all sorts of oohs and ahhs and babbles. You love when I talk baby talk to you, so I pretty much spend my entire days going, "Bee bee bee bee boop!" and "Aaaah-oooh, aaaah-oooh." When I say, "I love you," to you -- as I do about one hundred times each day -- I swear you try to say it back.
You love standing and are quite good at it -- with me holding you under your arms, of course. You also love when I lift you up above me and make airplane noises like, "Wheeeee! Wheeeee!" You go nuts when your Daddy rolls his tongue to make a Chewy noise. You don't know who Chewy is yet, I know, but with your Daddy, I promise you, you will. When we take you out and about, you love to look around and take in your new environments. You focus so intently that I can rarely get you to smile at your normal cues, like when I "bink" you on your nose. In those moments, you're like, "Excuse me, mother, but I have better things to do than perform at the moment. I am watching the world. Please excuse me."
And I like seeing you like that almost as much as I love your big, dimply, goofy grin.
It's funny. The thing I worried about the most when I found out you were on your way was that I'd lose a part of myself. That I'd be forced to give up things I love or things I thought made me who I was. How would I mesh the me I'd been crafting for 27 years with a role I didn't think I was ready for? All of that goes to show that the things we worry about are rarely the problems we wind up facing. Because if anything, since you've entered my life, I feel more like myself. I feel fully realized and confident and purposeful and complete. I feel like this is who I was meant to be all along. You have certainly changed me but when I try to pinpoint how, exactly, I can't really do it.
I'm still me. But somehow, I am MORE me. I'm your mommy. And I think, in some way, I always have been.