So cute....almost miss the baby stage, but then I remember this was one of the only 3 times this girl smiled in her first 18 months of life.
This pregnancy was my hardest emotionally and easiest physically.
Emotionally this mama was done having kids and was working hard at getting back to me, getting my body back, my time back, my house back in order, relearn what life would look like given all the medical trauma we experienced right before moving here. I was freshly forced out of my "secure" job of 8 years, had to discontinue my care with my doctor of 9 years as my health was no longer the priority and I had to sell and move from my first family home. So becoming pregnant and carrying through 9 months with a tiny bit of resentment that this is just the wrong time for so many reasons was emotionally one of the hardest things to endure, right after a lifetime of abuse and losing a baby....this sits around 3 for me.
But physically, I was blessed to be home and armed with my body forcing me to do it the healthiest way possible. Being able to nap and move when possible vs. being trapped in a corporate cubical meant I gained way less weigh, I had way less pain and I was less likely to snack on "garbage" to drag through my afternoon. I avoided ALL medical interventions from the beginning to the end (except two ultrasounds I was talked into). No heartburn meds, no pain meds, no nausea help, NOTHING!
Thank you aromatherapy! I honestly equate most of my success avoiding things like heartburn meds to aromatherapy....this is also why I am so passionate about helping others now too! Pretty amazing I could pull that all off for 9 straight months while being an emotional wreck about my circumstances. And labour was a breeze, literally, she was born 13 minutes after I was done registering at the hospital....5 minutes after Brendan walked into the room from parking.
Pregnancy was not the end and I waited anxiously for a precious baby that I could nap with, that would give me time to occasionally eat, or shower or do my own thing.....maybe just 5-15 minutes of calm. But this girl did not sleep unless she was bundled tight in my arms. She didn't even like her daddy, it took 4 months before she would even let him hold her without freaking out. She didn't sleep for more than 40 minutes for a year and a half.....you read that right, 18 months of sleeping in 40 minute intervals, I never experienced exhaustion like this before. And she cried constantly, for no reason at all, for 18 months. None of my boys were ever like this, they all varied in sleep patterns and personality, but we could put them down once in awhile.
Occasionally I could capture a smile and I made sure to get it on camera, because I needed that reminder every now and then that there is a rainbow at the end of this storm. And I was not new at this, I pulled out all the parenting stops, I mean she was my 4th full term baby, so it really shouldn't have been so hard, and yet it was harder than any other baby I had ever experienced.
At 18 months, she slept, first for 2 hours, then 3, then 4 and suddenly 5-7 hours of no crying became a very real thing. Since then, I have been sleeping a lot, probably recovering from adrenal fatigue so sometimes needing 10 hours, sometimes just 7 hours. I am healing, finding me, and working on a lot....in between the chaos of having my boys and all there drama and trauma too.
Now she is an energetic combination of moody, demanding, smiles, love and trying to do it all....if you don't let her do it the world will literally end! And at Micah's Christmas concert, she had us parents running around the gym breaking a sweat to keep her out of peoples purses or from stealing the front stage of the show. All while other parents of toddlers had them patiently sitting and watching the concert. Micah and Aidan would have sit for the concert as toddlers too, Dimytri was a busy body too, but not like her. Most days she is happy, but very strong in what she wants and needs....something I suppose worth fostering if I want her to be a strong minded female leader ;) Some of this is complicated by the fact that she doesn't speak yet, so communicating is frustrating on both ends, but we are working on it.
Everyday she teaches me about gratitude. I mean I did after all wait 16.5 years to get the girl. And all children are a blessing, even the ones making my hair grey faster and literally fall out.....my hair literally has been falling out for almost 2 years now (I have slowed it a lot with vitamins and specific hair care).
One thing I never experienced before, I am done, like 100% done having kids now.....no more maybes over here. And if anyone is ever unsure, feel free to spend a week with this girl, she will either having you falling head over heals in love with her or make your hair fall out too, there is no in between with this girl!
Oh and the idea of in 12-30 years I may be blessed to be a grandmother to experience this all over again from a different but very exciting perspective, that I truly do look forward to. I really do hope my kids fill our family with lots of little people for us to love. I never considered myself someone to be that into kids, except my own really, but as time passes I realize, I truly do love kids and I was definitely meant to have 4 babies and help other kids struggling. Its where my heart is and has been for longer than I ever realized before. Ask my husband, I try to rescue or help all the kids.....now I just need to make my wallet as big as my heart <3