Yesterday was my baby boy’s first birthday. It’s tempting to take on the traditional attitude of mothers whose babies are growing up, and talk about how I needed a box of tissues to get me through the day. But in all honesty… I wasn’t sad. I knew this day was coming from the day he was born, obviously. And so, instead of desperately grasping at every passing second over the course of this last year, trying to hold time in my hands, I enjoyed every moment. I took the time to stop and cuddle my boy, to lay kisses on him so thick that it would take a bulldozer to find him again.
I cherished those moments.
And you know what? While on one hand it truly is hard to believe that a full year has gone by, it hasn’t felt that fast. It feels like it’s gone at just the speed that it should have. I didn’t try to rush through the hard phases that he’s gone through so far. I just took each day for what it was, knowing that at some point in time, I was going to miss whatever was going on at that particular moment. Now, that’s not to say that I’ve been the perfect mother, and have never gotten completely, out-of-my-mind-frustrated with my kiddo, because I certainly have! But really, he has been such a good baby. The super frustrating moments haven’t been all that often.
I haven’t spent this past year willing time to stand still. No, I’ve spent it enjoying being a mother to it’s fullest, knowing that time would indeed keep moving on. I was standing in the card aisle the other day, trying to pick out my baby’s first birthday card, lost in thought as to what I was going to write in it, and suddenly the tears were there, threatening to spill over. As I blinked them quickly away, I realized that they were not tears of sadness over my baby getting older, and moving into a phase where he’s really not much of a baby anymore. They were tears of joy. Joy over this extraordinary gift I have been given. Motherhood has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I love it more than almost anything in this world.
It’s not sunshine and roses every day. In fact there are more hard days than easy ones. Being a mother is difficult and challenging. But then again, most character-building things in this life are just that. They’re hard. And being a mother? Yeah, it’s a character-building experience for sure. But the rewards far outweigh the challenges. The good days make up for the ten bad ones you had before it.
And as for the Birthday Boy himself? Well, he spent most of yesterday doing what he does best…
That and resisting a nap for 3 hours, which made him extremely cranky. I told you it wasn’t always a walk in the park. ;o)