To know my son is to love my son (it gets better)

It took me a long time to get to love my baby boy.  Unlike some moms, I was not engulfed by feelings of love the minute he entered the world.  And not because he tried to kill me (I don’t hold that against him).  Sure I felt something, I think, though in hindsight it is hard to remember.  Any feeling I may have experienced was completely overwhelmed by how much he needed me.  Nursing 24/7, colic, a disdain for sleep that he carries with him today – he was a high maintenance baby.  Or maybe I was a high maintenance mom who had just spent my entire pregnancy doing what I wanted when I wanted.

In any event, his dependence on me was crushing.

You might be shaking your head right now, little Miss “I-Have-All-The-Answers” and “it’s-all-so-simple.”  You probably think this was my doing.  That somehow I made him this way.  Maybe.  Maybe not.  But I have seen enough first time moms at this point to realize something was off.  Not everyone had as hard of a time as we did – me and Gavin.

It’s true!

Now that he is 3, I realize he is just a particular person.  He likes things just so.  Without being able to communicate those preferences, I can imagine infant-hood was like prison for him.  These days, he communicates like a champ.  We can talk about things, I can reason with him, and we can generally come to a mutually acceptable agreement on any matter (except why he can’t have Italian Ices for breakfast).

And the fact of the matter is, I adore him.  My heart explodes with unconditional love at some point almost every day.  Making him laugh is like a drug to me.  His hugs warm my heart and soul.  Hearing his enthusiasm while singing invigorates me.  Watching him overcome a fear inspires me.

The beauty of wonder

One of our favorite things to do before bed is watch one of the HBO “Classical Baby” series.  Typically it’s the Art Show or Classical Baby 2.  On a rare but delightful occasion we watch The Poetry Show.  The last poem, narrated by my dear dear stalking target friend Gwyneth Paltrow, brings tears to my eyes each and every time.

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life; and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

It took us some time, but our bond is air tight.

Love – pure and simple

Even when he drinks all my orange juice:

Let me tell you, this was a treat for me during Father’s Day brunch. An orange juice in NYC can cost more than $5! For a small! Please applaud my restraint here.
So to any new moms out there who might be struggling with this parenting thing I can assure you of three things:1.  You are NOT alone; and

2.  All the pain you are enduring is SO worth it; because

3.  It gets so much better!

My forever baby love
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About Carinn Jade

Mother, lawyer, yogi, writer, non-sleeper. Published @NYTMotherlode. Contributor @Mommyish @Moonfrye @HuffPostLive. I like beer (not wine) & tea (not coffee) & being a contrarian.
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4 Responses to To know my son is to love my son (it gets better)

  1. muddledmom says:

    I think boys are just tough as babies anyway. Did he need to be held all the time like mine did? Ugh. I was so grateful when my daughter was born and didn’t want to be held every second. It took me awhile to figure my son out too, but mostly, it was probably just figuring out me. 😉 And I’m still working on all of that (he’s 9).

    • Needed to be held ALL.THE.TIME. Yes, we’ve commented on our bounce bounce songs. And you are right – a lot of it has to do simply with the shift in your own identity (which I’m still working on too!).

  2. mommysaidaswearword says:

    This made me teary. I wasn’t an immediate-attacher, either. I’m starting to freak out about my impending bundle for this very reason.

    • I get it. I was worried too, pregnant with my second and dreading those first 6 weeks/3 months/9 months. But things were really different with my second. Every mom is different, every child is different – but you might have that immediate attachment this time around. Or you might not (but look what they become!). It is possible.

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