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30 weeks | A life of his own | no. 0023
There is little over an hour left to this Wednesday. I just chopped three paragraphs out of this post and put them in the reserve pile with the other thousands of pages in the “to-be-continued” cupboard of my life. I was writing about how the munchkin and I survived being apart from each other while I was being a bridesmaid. It’s an important story, and one that needs way more energy for the telling than I’ve got right now.
Today was a lot of moving around. The rhythm of our days is changing as spring nears (even though it was wicked cold today and the munchkin is still rocking out in his snowsuit), and we are getting out of the house on our own much more. Today we caught four buses and a shuttle, visited two doctor’s offices, walked through snow flurries, felt powerless against the stubborn winds of winter, and chased the sun when it managed to break free of the clouds because a little warmth is better than no warmth at all.
Today the munchkin had to get blood drawn and they couldn’t find his infant vein. I tried to nurse him through the pain, but it didn’t deliver any magic so he howled. I stared down into his disbelief and could think of nothing right to say. Sometimes life will be uncomfortable. The phlebotomist decided to just prick the finger instead, and this time the munchkin stayed on the breast and let them collect their sample without resistance. When it was over they put a regular bandage on the tiny opening and it looked so odd to see him in something intended for adult wounds.
The munchkin did not smile for me for some time after the ordeal. I told myself he was tired, but maybe he was just traumatized once again from the truth that even mommy can not save him from every unpleasant thing.
He was reminded of this harsh reality again when he fell on his head a few hours later. While attempting to crawl toward his father’s feet, gravity won out and brought him down to the wood floor. Just before the awful cry, the silence of awareness that something bad has happened to you lasted for about two seconds. When I picked him up, I held him close to me. Through his tears we explained that these falls were going to happen sometimes. A natural part of him learning to navigate the space on his own.
Lately I’ve been reflecting on all the shades of our independence. The munchkin is growing into himself and I am becoming more familiar with the woman being shaped inside the mothering. This was always going to be a collaboration. He is showing me who he wants to be, what’s important to him, how I can support him. Even in the small moments when it seems nothing major is going on, I am having to listen to him more.
The munchkin, my first born, was born on a Wednesday. Wednesday’s Bloom: Textual Portraits of a New Mommy is an ongoing multi-media documentary project about my process as a mother. Today’s story is a part of Volume 1, 73 consecutive weeks of posts, spanning about the first year and a half of the munchkin’s life. Each episode explores my weekly discoveries, challenges, questions, and hopes as a mother. I also facilitate the New Mommy Writers’ Workshop for all mothers and women active in their mothering work who are excited about cultivating their own writing practices.