River is now 22 months, which means 2 is just around the corner. Problably one of the most reverberated phrases in parenthood is “it goes by so fast!” I’m guilty of it, at least agreeing with it, but I don’t actually feel that way. When someone says to me “I can’t believe he’s already (insert age here)!” I say, “I know” because I feel like my true answer of “I can!” sounds like I’m complaining.
The truth is that I’m not shocked at his age or pace of the advancements he’s making because I’m so present. I’ve never been more present for anything in my life. I don’t mean because I’m a SAHM and am physically with him every minute. I mean because I sop up every moment I have with him like a biscuit in a bowl of soup. (Sorry, I’m hungry) And I attribute every bit of this to my years battling with infertility and having to accept that I may never be a mother.
I’m certainly not saying that someone can’t relish every minute with their child without going through infertility, but I know in my case it was a necessary ingredient. I’m a planner and a worrier, my mind is typically on the future at all times rather than the present. Living in the moment does not come naturally to me and I constantly have had to work on that in my life. But as a mother now it’s coming so naturally to me. I feel like a sponge just soaking it all in and it’s wonderful. This is how life should be lived.
I’ve had a total love/hate relationship with the saying “everything happens for a reason.” As a Buddhist this is the crux of my beliefs, but it if you said it to me while I was going through fertility issues I may have stabbed you with a pencil. There were times I felt very bitter about what I was going through, and resentful of the fact that there could be no silver lining. Even on the better days when I held on to hope I would someday get pregnant, my focus was on how every day that passed without getting pregnant was one less day I would get to spend with my child. What a bummer way to feel.
If I could rewrite my own story now and get pregnant right when we started trying, I don’t think I would. In fact, I know I wouldn’t! Everything I went through in order to have him has made me the mom I am, and I’m really proud of that person. She’s so different from all the other people I’ve been in my life, and far cooler. I’m so much more laid back (for me) and find humor in the really crumby parts, like at 2 am when he projectile vomits in a 4 ft radius around himself, the bed, me, the dog, as his head spun around a la The Exorcist. Or when he threw my entire makeup bag in the toilet. 😬 MOMMY LOVES YOU. 😬 Even these moments feel like a gift, and I find myself almost giddy about them rather than upset.
I do feel like the people that have to wait and work hard to finally get their child are just different as parents. I’m not going to say “better” because that’s RUDE. 😉 But I think we have an easier time finding joy in even the shitty parts. Some may call us insufferable as we post every burp and toot on instagram, but that’s ok because those people just don’t get it. It’s ALL exciting when you’ve stared down the barrel of a life without children.