Monthly Archives: February 2015

Balance

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rocks balancing

It’s been quite a while since I’ve written, for a variety of reasons.  First of all, of course, is that I’ve been learning how to take care of a newborn.  It’s been an adventure, for certain.  Beautiful and wonderful and hard and tiring and scary and all the things that go along with being a new parent.  The trick is, I should know these things.  I have been a parent before.  But the first round was very intense…full of hyper-vigilant focus and stress and, when I think about it, the same words I used to describe our current adventure…beautiful, wonderful, hard, tiring, scary. Part of the navigation of the new is also sweeping through our first trip, picking up bits and pieces along the way. Often, as with the first months after Bennie was gone, I find myself thinking it was all a dream. That my son was still here, sleeping in the room to the west. He was running and playing and growing and laughing and learning to love his new little sister. Sometimes, people forget. I’m sure not purposefully. They say things like, “well that’s what it’s like with the second child” or other things and I think “oh, how I’d like to know how that feels”. Because even though Zoey is our second, in so many ways she is our first. The first to come home. The first to figure out how to feed, how to bathe, how to help learn to sleep and roll over and smile. How I wish I had those moments with Bennie. It breaks my heart sometimes that I didn’t. I don’t let myself fall into that sad place often because it breaks my promise to him…to live in the moment, to not take a second for granted. I leave space for all of it and let myself linger when I need to. I often see families, with mothers who look stressed and at the end of their rope. And I understand that now in a different way than I did last year at this time, when I was stressed but for different reasons. One of the biggest gifts that Bennie gave me was to know that even the hardest moments can be good. Now that does not mean that I slide through those moments now, full of grace and gratitude. No, I get frustrated when Zoey won’t sleep, I get cranky when I can’t figure out the work/family balance. I get down right mean when it comes to milk production. But, I also try to remind myself to breathe. And I look at Zoey’s sweet face (or screaming face, depending on the moment) and I think about her brother and how they have the same nose and the same “don’t give me any sh*!” look and the same cute dimply hands. And I realize how much he is here with us. Everyday. I miss him. Everyday. I love him. Everyday. We are working on our first gifts from his foundation and that fills my heart up pretty well. I sit and I look at Zoey, sucking her fingers and cooing, and I realize that she is so much her own little person but also such a reflection of her brother in so many ways. It helps, to see that. It helps to understand how much love you can feel for one little person, both here and not. My heart grows a little more every day…every time I look at those little chubby cheeks and when she stretches out her rolly legs and smiles big. Work/life balance. Living/loss balance. Partner/mother balance. It’s all there. With a few extra layers. And oh, how I love them. ❤

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