A Public Service Announcement to Myself.
Dear Mother Nature,
Very funny. The pear tree is blooming. The grass is sprouting. The chickens are laying eggs. It seems like spring.
When we woke up this morning the ground was covered in white frost. It’s cold. The wind is blowing and it’s chilly.
There are clouds and cold drizzle mixed with sleet.
I am not pleased. I need spring, for real this time! Please!
We tried to make the most of this dreary day, but the cold wind was unpleasant.
My girls…oh how I love them. I feel like I can’t get enough. I am trying to soak up each moment. Time is fleeting, slipping through my fingers, and my girls seem to be growing up in fast forward.
At night I tuck Rosie into her little bed, her legs are so long that they’ve outgrown her favorite baby sized flannel blanket. I still cover her up with it, per her request. She folds her body up into a small ball in order to fit under it. I kiss her forehead, and I marvel over how big her face is now. How child-like her features are. Not a trace of babyhood or chubby toddler left. When did this happen? I try to remember the exact moment she went from toddler to little girl, but I can’t. It was fast and without fanfare. Suddenly she is just Rosie, a little girl who is very cautious, but also extremely smart and quite eager to learn everything she can.
Was it not just the other day I was pregnant with her, and scared? Now look at her. I could stare at her face all day, for hours, marveling at how she has changed so quickly.
When Ada is sleeping soundly in bed every evening I sneak away from her. She stirs and looks for me quickly. Sometimes it’s only five minutes. I hear her cries, and I rush into the room. She’s always sitting up in bed, her eyes squinted in a sleepy haze, tears running down her cheeks. As soon as she sees me her arms reach up to me, her pudgy little hands open wide. I can’t help but to scoop her up and hold her tightly. I whisper in her ears how much I love her. I kiss her chubby cheeks, bury my nose in her hair. Then we lay down together in bed and she nurses, her little hands tucked onto my chest, her eyelids closed tightly, her eyelashes dark against flushed cheeks. I can feel her tongue moving in the sucking pattern specifically for comfort, soft and fluttering like a butterfly, as she drifts back to sleep secure in my arms.
I love her. I snuggle her all night long some nights, because she doesn’t want to let me go and I don’t want to let her go. My dreams are peppered with thoughts of flowing milk, sweet baby scents, and soft baby skin against my body.
I know soon it will be over. She’ll be big, like Rosie. Her sweetness will be gone, replaced by childhood adventure.
I might cry, thinking of it.
But for now, I will just revel in it and try my best to imprint every moment deep into my heart.
People think that it’s all a bunch of bull shit–there’s no way anyone could be this happy. I am though. I really am, because I’ve discovered a secret.
I’m sure some people think their life sucks and I’m just lucky. Sure, I am blessed to have two healthy girls, but beyond that…well if you’ve known me long enough you know plenty of difficult things have happened in my life. Being a pregnant teenager, getting married at nineteen, infidelity, being dirt poor, my husband losing his job, the time my placenta tore away and caused my baby to die while I gushed a lake of blood…
I’ve realized life isn’t about luck. It’s about what you make of each moment. In each moment we can choose to be happy. You never know what will happen in the next moment–you could hear your baby’s healthy heartbeat and then a few hours later gush blood, because that happened to me. You could be sitting in your living room and suddenly have your entire town knocked down by an earthquake and washed away by a tsunami, because that just happened to thousands of people. You think it will never happen to you, but the truth is you never know.
Each moment is unique from the next moment, and in this moment while all is well I choose to be present and happy. I don’t want anything to distract me from the happy laughter of my girls, or their tears either. I have to step back and remind myself not to waste away this moment worrying about the past or the future, or staring at the my iPhone, or wishing things were different in some way.
This is now. Now is perfect enough for me.
This is what I look like right now.
Tired. Pimples. Pony tail.
Is that ok? I shouldn’t waste this moment worrying about how tired I look. I have to keep reminding myself.
While I was fretting over my own reflection I almost missed this.