I’ve been searching for my words in others’. I know they won’t be there; but somehow my thoughts are still a jumbled mess of syllables inside my mind. Much like my little monkey learning to babble, it’s how I feel about trying to articulate just what exactly has happened over these last 9 months.
The overwhelming love and joy that I have begun to experience since Heston turned 7 months is white-washing the nightmare that was my daily routine from day 1 – month 7. Everyone says you’ll forget the hard times, and maybe they are right. But it’s not that I’ve forgotten…but I can’t quite remember it, rather articulate it… it’s still so foggy and yet I can’t believe that I actually have “hindsight”. We were in the trenches. And then we weren’t. I may not have the words for it, but I feel that I’ve been marked, branded, in some unique way. And I’m talking about more than the permanent dark circles under my eyes and the severe postpartum hair loss (how did I not know this was a thing?!); nor is it the mark of general motherhood — but it is the mark of mothering an un-well baby, battling the demons of expectations and comparison, and digging down to a very deep, personal place to find the strength to get up again and again — for 7 months straight.
There are things I spontaneously remember that I’ve clearly already forgotten about…. My mantra for so long was “don’t forget about this,” but the way PTSD works, you’re supposed to forget, to be able to move on. So while my pen had no fortitude and my memory no energy, nothing is more telling than my google search history; my digital legacy paints quite the picture.
- what’s wrong with my baby
- newborn won’t stop crying
- newborn choking
- what to do with a newborn
- does my baby hate me
- baby poop by color
- how do i know if I’m going crazy
- how long can I go without sleep
- sleep deprivation as torture
And let’s not even go down the google rabbit hole of the breastfeeding problems I was having. Oh Lawdy.
But I keep waiting to be able to articulate my experience to write in this space, but I think what’s needed is a fresh page, starting now. So I’ll start with the present.
At 9 months, my little monkey is finally mobile. He still breastfeeds, so eating is more about trial and error and tactile experience rather than nutrition. But he loves almost any flavor food I’ve tried, spices and all. But things with texture… not so much. Because I’ve never been around babies I’m not sure what is unique to his personality, but I’m picking up on what others say about him. One of the most common comments I hear when we’re out and about is, “he’s so serious!” And he is. Whilst out in the world, he likes to be worn in my ring sling. And he’s SO contemplative. He sits straight-faced, soaking it all in. But when we’re at home, he’s all squeals and giggles. He’s definitely my kid.
His head is finally becoming more proportionate to his body and is in the 71st percentile (down from 92nd!), while height is 47th percentile and weight is 24th. Watermelon on a toothpick. And he’s wonderful.