To my future self.
(or my future self in 5 minutes)
Yeah, I see you over there.
Biting your nails. Clinching your jaw. Eyes closed. Rubbing your temples. Trying to take deep, calming breaths. Most likely with a pounding headache.. I see you desperately searching for some sort of escape or relief from all this built up tension, and anger rampaging throughout your body, before it ends in a raging fit of tears, screams, and uncontrolled gasps of air. Maybe, a foot stomp in there somewhere. Hmmm.. that might just be me? Right before she rears her ugly, haggard face back to strike, and all hell breaks loose.
Never do we take pride in those moments. But I'm here to tell you that those feelings you are having will pass. You are okay. You are not broken. You are not alone in this world. Don't forget that. Ever.
Do you remember what it was like when you first held him? The serenity of it all just washing over you. The feeling of the first time he latched on, and the overwhelming love you felt toward this sweet, innocent creature. The feeling of him grabbing your fingers. The smell of his newborn freshness. Just the all encompassing love that was filling you to capacity, and you didn't think you'd be able to handle it anymore.. But then he'd open his eyes, and look at you. Remember, when he started to really recognize you? He knew that you were his. He knew that you loved him. He knew that you were his mama. Remember, when you would just lay in bed with him all day, just staring at him, nursing, without a care in the world? Remember, his first smile? Or when he didn't really know how to sneeze in those first few weeks, and he would make the cutest sound ever? Remember, when he first learned to sit up on his own? Remember his first real laugh? Remember those first steps tentative that your breath away? Remember when he first said "mama"?
Well, keep remembering these.
Hold them tight.
Wrap them up in a pretty little ball of lace,
and tuck them in your pocket.
Because you're gonna need it.
When he is throwing himself on the floor in a fit of rage with tears streaming down his face, and a cry that could wake the dead, because he can't throw the remote at your kneecaps anymore. When he has just smacked you upside the head with his truck because you took away that marker. When he bit you because he got overly filled with emotions. When he is rolling, bashing, slashing, screaming away to get out of a diaper change. When he has attempted to escape your clutches by jumping out of the cart in the middle of Target because you didn't open that box of "fishies" fast enough, and are now getting weird looks from non-parent's because "you didn't pay for that yet"... Yeah, you know what I'm talking about.
But before you hit that breaking point, take a deep breath, and remember that he is innocent. You may feel alienated from him... a lot. He may feel like a stranger at times. Or like he is a spawn of a nether creature.. But he isn't. He is yours. Your perfect little 18 month old who waves his arms so fast, with his giant toothy grin while shrieking whenever he sees an animal within 30 feet. Who wants every single one of his stuffies inside his crib right when he wakes up, so he can lay there for 20 minutes talking to each of them. Who loves giving open mouth kisses. Who attempts to share his paci, and blankie with strangers who he deems worthy. Who can chuck a softball, one handed, clear across the yard. Who whenever sees a delicious snack, exclaims "TREAT?" in the cutest little voice. Who loves to snuggle up to you when watching his favorite movie. Who hides whatever he can find in the bed of his truck. Who is completely fearless.
He. Is. YOURS.
He needs your love. Your guidance. Your support. & never ending compassion, and patience. He's had barely over a year to come to grips with his emotions. You've had 22 years to perfect yours. You both are learning, and growing together. Love him fully, and relentlessly. And please, spare yourself the guilt for forgetting it. You get enough of it from your own mother. (Just kidding mom... kinda ;) We all have those moments. And regardless of them, our kiddos still think we're pretty freaking cool / because we are.
The Now-Tamed Mommy Monster