I am a free spirit. I like to have flexibility in my days so I can do out of the ordinary things. Cole is very much the same way, and strangely enough, it works well. We both like to do things on the spur of the moment and like to feel free. Getting married, strangely, didn't make either of us feel tied down... at least not in a bad way, like most people say. Now we both had a constant companion in our musings and random whims to go out of town and do fun things. We liked it this way and since we had enough sense to not be irresponsible in our ventures, it worked.
Fast forward three short months. I stared down at a positive pregnancy test and knew in that instant that my life would be changed forever. I was thrilled at the idea of being a mother, but I was incredibly apprehensive about how life would change. I felt guilty of my fear, knowing that a child was a blessing and gift, but on the other hand I just couldn't imagine exactly what life would be like. I had been a nanny for 2 1/2 years, and before that had spent a lot of time around children so I knew what to expect as far as caring and nurturing a child, but it wasn‘t 24/7 for years upon end. I knew, as a mother, there is no such thing as "taking off" and I did my best to prepare myself for the change. The few people I was honest with about it were incredibly encouraging about my feelings being completely normal. "Once she's born, you won't be able to imagine life being any different" a friend told me. I wasn't sure I believed her, but really hoped it would be true for me. I was excited as I got ready for her and after a little while, didn't think much about the change anymore. I didn't have time to!
She came 2 1/2 weeks early, on an incredibly stressful, but nonetheless beautiful day. There were 5 1/2 hours from my first contraction to the time she was born in a near perfect delivery. When she was placed in my arms, I was shocked. She didn't look anything like I'd expected her to. When Ianna was born 2 1/2 weeks earlier, she looked like a clone of Merisha as a baby. Selina didn't look a thing like me, and I didn't think she looked like Cole either. But one thing was certain: She was the most beautiful baby I'd ever seen. That night I didn't sleep. The night following I didn't either. All I wanted to do was look at her. Cole had the nurse take her to the nursery at some point so I could sleep, but I was a wreck the whole time she was gone.
When we got home, reality set in. She slept very well for a newborn, but was a light sleeper who wouldn't sleep in her car seat. This meant I was home-bound. I wouldn't be seeing anyone unless they wanted to come see me. I had some mild drug induced depression which made everything seem way worse than it really was. Overwhelmed is the best word I can use to describe it. So in the first two months I really felt like everything was just a huge deal. Going out of the house was a no. Waaay to overwhelming to even think about! After a while I decided I’d rather live with the effects of not taking the medication and be myself than to continue in this very uncharacteristically down me. I got off of the medication and within a couple of weeks I was a new person. Or actually, I was back to the old person. Either way, things were looking up!
And now that I’m back to myself, it amazes me how little of a sacrifice my freedom seems to be. I definitely don’t have the chance to go and do things at the spur of the moment anymore, at least not for now, and sometimes I still long for those by gone days. But overall, I consider my life to be far better than it was 6 months ago. When a friend asked me how I was adjusting to being a mom, I responded this way: “Ya know, you can prepare yourself for the sleepless nights, the responsibility of having a child rely on you all the time and the change it will make. But no one can prepare you for the love you will feel for your child.” It’s simply indescribable. When I look into those beautiful dark blue eyes, see her amazing smile and cuddle her close, nothing seems like nearly so much of a sacrifice. 2 am feedings? Got it. Pumping every 2 hours because baby REFUSES to nurse? No problem. “Sorry, I can’t, Selina just went down for a nap.” Worth it.
The past 5 ½ months have flown by just as I knew they would. I’ve loved every moment and I can say, I’ve lived them to the fullest. I’ve nurtured and loved my child. I’ve watched in amazement as she does new things. I’ve spent countless hours just looking at her, trying to soak in the moment, knowing so soon she’ll be past this amazing age. And I’ve prayed. Prayed that God would make me into the mother I should be. Prayed that she would learn to hear his voice. Though some people may call it “tied down,” I don‘t regret an instant I spent with her. To me, she’s worth any amount of freedom I’ve lost a hundred times over.