Dear Eve, what you wouldn’t learn from Instagram about your first year

Dear Eve,

Immediately after you were born, the words of Miley Cyrus’ Wrecking Ball were on repeat in my brain: “You came in like a wrecking ball…I never fell so hard in love…” (which, it turns out are not actually accurate lyrics, but that’s what was in my head). I know. I’m totally embarrassed to admit this. Of all songs, Miley Cyrus…but it fit, and that’s what I was singing in my head.

But really, you came into this world and wrecked my life. In the most perfect and painful way. Going from only being responsible for myself to being responsible for the most beautiful little (tiny, actually) human being I have ever met was…well, there is just no word for it really.

I want to tell you some things about the first year. I want to do my best to share so much of this journey with you, because if you choose it, you too will be a mama someday, and I don’t want you to feel alone or like you’re crazy – although in my experience, you might actually be crazy for some of it…but even then, I want you to know that it’s totally okay to be your own kind of crazy that first year- and probably for the rest of our lives as mamas.

Here are a few of the behind-the-scenes realities of our first year together:

  • In the beginning I was constantly asking you if you knew I was your mom, “Do you know I’m your mommy Eve?”, I would ask you over and over. I was really asking myself. Because even though labor and delivery was a pretty darn hard 12 hours, that’s still a quick turnaround from Krista the woman to Krista the mom. And transitions in life can be so wonderful, but they are always hard too. Even the best transitions include loss, because you’re leaving something behind. 
  • Having a baby was hard on our marriage. Months 6-7 especially, were ones of conflict between your daddy and me. We had tough work schedules and not enough together time and the exhaustion of a baby, and we struggled. But when relationships get hard you have to look at your own part, and your daddy and I both had to stop pointing the finger and work on our own stuff. And your dad and I are committed to each other, and we will always work things out. 
  • The joy of knowing you this year has been accompanied by the sorrow we feel with and for sweet friends who have lost a child or struggle to have children. And you will find that in life there is always good and bad, beautiful and painful, joy and sorrow occurring at once- and we have to allow ourselves to feel them both and feel them with loved ones, in order to be whole.
  • In the first months with you I was so aware of my temptation to make you my world (Helen Reddy’s You and Me Against the World often playing in my mind as I nursed you). The beauty of having you in our lives is so overwhelming, so powerful, so strong, that I constantly question both if it is real and what I would do if I ever lost you. But I must be cautious not to make you my everything, because no one person can fulfill us. Only God can do that. 

It’s been a hard year, Eve, and an amazing one. To say we are grateful for your presence in our lives doesn’t quite feel like enough. But we are so grateful! Watching you grow, holding you, kissing you, loving you- is such a gift. The fear of losing you is almost more than I can bear. Thank you for being part of what made our lives great this year. We are so thankful to call you–our sweet, curious, cautious girl–daughter.

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