It’s hard to believe a year has passed; a year ago I was just a mom to one amazing, spirited toddler. Life seemed so...easy (with one child). It seemed to be balanced. I could be selfish with my time as my heart had only Olivia to care for.
February 23rd changed all of that. Enter Grayson. After a quick delivery (#thankyouepidural), my baby boy was finally mine. To have and to hold. How did my heart seem to grow, double in size overnight? How is it possible that I just created time, space and energy for another child without effort? That part of being a mother will always amaze me.
As I reflect back on this year with Gray, or GG, Mr. G, Walnut or Bubbies as his nicknames have developed, I can’t believe my sweet little boy is one. I feel like we covered a lot of ground physically; Laguna Beach, Charleston, South Haven, Bermuda, and New York. And emotionally - he taught me that sometimes google or the doctors won’t have the answers and I’ll have to be patient and trust my mommy gut (one I hope to lose this year - ha!).
I struggled in the beginning. I was just so exhausted. I forgot what sleep deprivation can do to my emotional state and multiply that with caring for a toddler and I just honestly don’t remember how we survived as a family. And we still had our nanny full time and my mother on Fridays (and on speed dial). He was born at 7 lbs 4oz and has been exclusively breastfed for his first year; I struggled to understand why he wasn’t gaining weight at the rapid pace I was used to with Liv. No matter what I read or did (wake up to nurse every 2 hours; log the ounces he’d take from the bottle; buy a scale to weigh him after feeds to see how much he would take in; dream feed after we sleep trained at 4 months until he was 9 months old, the list goes on) his weight has always been in the 10th-ish percentile. I still feel like a failure in that regard, even though I know some kids are just small and the doctor has no concerns as he’s thriving/developing just fine. Where does all the food go?!
And maybe that’s just it; he is my sweet, small little dude and I never want him to grow up. He cuddles; playfully resting his head on my shoulder just to pop up and smile at you and repeat like 100 times. Liv can make him laugh which is just the cutest thing to watch. He enjoys speed crawling and pulling up on everything, not close to walking yet. #finebyme. His speech is developing which is just the coolest. He can say bye, hi, please, hot, uh-oh, blueberry, bottle, mama, dada, apple, balloon, more. And then mostly yells a lot - his version of participating in the nightly conversations at the dinner table.
As a working mom, I harbor some guilt about being away from my kids all day. Dinner is the #1 thing Jon and I adhere to nearly every night (unless I am traveling for work, which these days has been an overnight every other week). We make dinner together, all eat as a family and talk about our day, share funny stories and sometimes throw a rap or dance party in for dessert.
When I look back at this year, my heart bursts with so much love for him. He is just such a chill baby, so happy nearly every minute, even when Liv takes toys from him, or tries to carry him and subsequently drops him (#hesfine). His demeanor is exactly what we needed to survive this past year. I’d like to think my dad had his hand in this, helping us from a different place. I see a lot of my dad in Gray and sometimes I feel a pang of sadness that he’s not here to experience his grandson, in true form, as I suspect he’s laughing from above as I try to wrangle him into his jammies every night, a process which takes 15 minutes and has me sweating :) thanks for keeping me on my toes pops.