You know the joke (sort of) about how new parents look down at their baby and wonder when the "real" parents will show up? Only because it is such a great responsibility!
Confession time: I STILL feel that way, even though my son just turned 4.5 years old. How is he MINE? How am I old enough to have kids? (and some of my friends have teenagers) When are the real grown-ups going to show up and make the decisions and take him to the doctor and shepherd his little heart? I'm so glad I don't have to do it by myself. Because I'm winging it.
When I take the time to slow down, I wonder if I'm too late to enjoy him while he's still little. What if he doesn't need me anymore? I yell "I love you!" just to test it out, and he still says it back. :) I reach out for a cuddle, and he's still up for it. Whew. I can't carry him around anymore. And since I stopped trying to carry him around much about a year ago, it always surprises me when I put my arms around him and feel how tall and heavy he's gotten.
At night David often calls for me, since Daddy is with Sophia. I grab half the contents of my bedside table and relocate to his bed across the hall. Recently I noticed that he was making it until dawn by himself. But then I kept going in to join him anyway. Sometimes the neighbors were too loud on my side of the apartment, and sometimes I just wanted the company. I wanted to squeeze in as many cuddles as I could! Then when it got really cold this past week, we curled up together for warmth, and argued in the morning over who would turn on the light!
Having a younger sibling can make a child seem older, but David is still a little boy! He still has cute (mis)pronunciation and plenty of innocence left. "Come visit us sometime," say the guests on their way out. "Okay, I'll come tomorrow!" I'm a little bit scared thinking of the disappointments in life that will eventually come his way.
I hope he notices that I neglect the housework in order to spend time with him! I know it probably seems like he always has to wait for me to just do one more thing-feed the baby, go to the bathroom, get a drink of water, turn on the washing machine, etc. But I really do try to relax and be present, even if I complain about the mess all along the way.
4.5 years ago I became a mother! I don't feel like I'm out of the fog yet, but I've managed to keep him alive so far. ;)
P.S. Totally forgot to dedicate a song to my birthday boy! Not really related to motherhood, but in honor of the Storks movie we've been watching lately, it's "Fire and the Flood" by Vance Joy.
Late at night when you can't fall asleep
I'll be lying right beside you counting sheep
Anywhere I go there you are
Anywhere I go there you are...