Thursday, January 26, 2012

A Letter to My Almost-5-Month-Old 'Rad

Dear Connor (I'm trying to use your official nickname more since "they" say you should respond to your name by 5 months),

I hope that by the time you can read this, your mother will no longer be the high-strung person who, last night, made you three different bottles because you just weren't hungry when you usually are.  It didn't matter that you were happily perched on my shoulder after only eating 3 of your usual 6oz dinner.  It didn't matter that you wanted to play and were bouncing on my legs.  The fact that you didn't eat what you normally eat threw me into such a tizzy that your dad had to talk me down when he got home after a long day of work and school.  

When you first entered the world, after the initial whirlwind of bringing you home and getting to know you a little better, I fancied myself a laid-back parent.  I might not have known (and still don't) what I'm doing, but I was ok with that.  I was able to take the hits as they came instead of falling flat on my back at every one that came at me.  I told myself to go with the flow and for a while I took my own advice.  But as I write to you today, I'm not sure where that person went and I'm trying to find her again.  

She and I both marvel at how quickly you're growing, at the fact that you're almost 5-months old and ready to start solids, that you're pulling yourself up to a sitting position without any prompting, that you've already rolled from your back to your tummy and from your tummy to your back.  The big difference between me and her, though, is that she saw all of your changes as exciting, whereas I am freaked out by them, constantly wondering if I'm prepared and if you're ok.  Am I a good parent?  Will I be one?  Will you reach your full potential?  Will I be able to keep myself from wanting to spoil you rotten because you're the most delicious baby ever?  Will you be a good toddler, kid, adolescent, and adult?  I guess the bigger question is, will I be able to change my mindset so that I don't worry about these things but instead act as the parent I want to be?  

Consider this letter a call to arms for myself so that I can be a better person and parent for you, for me, and for any siblings that you may have.  You'll find out how that goes.




Anonymous said...

A parent with grown children told me when I was pregnant that he came to the realization that no parent is ever perfect. He knew that he would make mistakes but that his little girl would be ok. I remind myself this everday. Your worrying just goes to show that you are as caring and loving as you could possibly be.

KristinG said...

I second what was said above...or as my therapist told me "somehow, some way...they survive us." I sooo know what you are going through and I laugh everytime I remember how I thought I would be such a cool, laid back mom...tell that to the anxiety filled wreck that constantly placed a pillow behind my wobbly, just-learning-to-sit-up-on-her-own baby (with Momma worrying constantly that she would fall backwards and crash into the tile floor with her precious little noggin'...) In some respects it gets other ways harder. Who you were before and who you are now are 2 different people...let the old you embrace the new you and give yourself a big hug because you are doing a great job Mom! Love you!!