Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Happy Birthday, Caroline!

I've been a mother for one year now! The cliche is true. As hard as it is to imagine what being a parent is like and how you will fit a child into your life, once that child is here, you can't imagine life without her. I am surprised at how easily I've slipped into this new world. Sure, there have been rough patches, but looking back, the bad parts weren't bad at all. We survived the marathon nursing of the first months, the isolating loneliness of adjusting to being a full-time mom, teething, crawling, first steps. (yes, those happened this weekend!) I credit my sanity to the amazing village of mothers I have affiliated myself with. I can not imagine happily mothering without the amount of contact I have with other moms and Caroline has with other kids. Thanks for playgroups and internet groups, the isolating lonlieness of the earlier months has been replaced by an overbooked schedule! I have a sweet baby who gives me joy every day. I'm going to savor every minute of it.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

Mother's Day is a hard day for kids (no matter how old) who have lost their mothers. I remember asking my sister, who had a child already, if Mother's Day was easier for her after she was a mother since it became more about her and less about our mom and her absence. She said it did. And it has.

But on this Mother's Day, I don't want to forget the two women who have the greatest influence on me as a mother -- my mom and John's mom. I find myself thinking of them often and wondering how they would have handled certain situations. I feel that I've come to know them both better, even without their actually being here and having never even met John's mom, since I've become a mom.

I know that they have both greatly influenced how I mother, too. From John's mom, I've learned the importance of natural parenting. I think of her as I nurse Caroline, offer her whole foods, and diaper her bottom with soft cloth. From my mom, I learned the value of playful parenting. I have wonderful memories of laughing with my mom, making even mundane tasks fun. From both of these extraordinary women, I learned what a difference being with your child can make. John and I both were quite attached to our mommies. Some may have even considered us spoiled. I only hope I can "spoil" Caroline in the way our mother's "spoiled" us. That close bond we both had in knowing our moms were there for us no matter what gave us the foundation to make it through the later times without them.

Happy Mother's Day to me.
Happy Mother's Day, Mommy!
Happy Mother's Day, Carolyn!