I almost forgot that today was Phoebe’s 2 month “birthday.” What a milestone! It warms my heart to see it. I snapped some pictures of her right before bedtime. She’s wearing some of my favorite PJs; they have hedgehogs on them. And her hair is all mussed and curly from her bath.
So much has developed this month. I feel like Phoebe continually surprises us with new noises and facial expressions. She is SUCH an expressive baby, so full of joy and laughter. She is also full of noises, giggles, grunts and blurps. She will be quite the chatterbox someday.
One of her favorite things to do is watch the Pom Pom Mobile that I made for her. As you can see in the above video, she’ll lie under it and flail her arms; she knows that if she hits one of the bottom pom poms, it will send the whole thing spinning. She gazes up at the mirror, fixated. If we leave her under it, she’ll flail and giggle and talk to it for up to twenty minutes. I’ll keep walking in and out of the room to check on her, but she’ll just be having the time of her life. Sometimes, after she’s been lying under it for a while, I’ll prop her up in my lap to give her a different perspective. As soon as I give the mobile a spin, she gives a gleeful little grin.
Kickin’ kickin’ kickin’…that’s how I would describe Phoebe this month. She has so much energy. And she is such a happy baby. It really warms my heart to see her find so much contentment.
That doesn’t mean that times are always easy. No. Phoebe cries. We both have hard days. But I see her developing and growing, and that warms my heart.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about methods and the things people do to exercise a degree of control over their lives and their children. The truth is, from the beginning of the pregnancy, I have always felt, to some degree, OUT of control. Pregnancy, birth and parenthood are disorienting events. And, the older your child grows, the more they develop their personhood, until someday you’re having an adult relationship with your own child!
Holy cow! Talk about intimidating!
My baby. Is a PERSON. That will GROW UP. And be on equal footing with me.
Intimidating? Yes. But totally frickin’ cool.
So, I’ve chosen to view these crazy early parenting months not as CHAOTIC or as CONTROLLABLE. No. These mindsets are just too simplistic, and they miss out on a lot of the humanity involved in parenting. I choose to view my parenting as COMPLEX.
My relationship with my daughter is complex. We’re both getting to know each other; at the same time, we are both independently growing and changing and influencing each other.
My daughter is complex all on her own. She has trends, and she tends to behave a general way, but she is as unpredictable as any person would be. Sometimes she has bad days. Sometimes she’s inconsistent. Sometimes she doesn’t know what she wants. Sometimes she’s more demanding and needy than other times. But she is not a random collection of whines, spit rags and poopy diapers. She is a person experiencing life, growing with it, and being changed by it. She’s finding her groove.
I want to write you a poem,
but every time I look at you, all I see is myself,
the map of my own face highlighted with joy,
all the routes we’ve yet to take;
how can I say anything to you that you do not already know?
As I hold you, my heart beats strong.
I am the Old Town.
I am the Motherland.
I send you with sails and hearty sea song:
“Oh holy, old holy, oh baby and me;
Sing me a song of this wide salty sea.
My past and my future and this now make three.
Oh holy, old holy, my baby and me.”
We spring forth from the deep.
We spiral through mothers and times.
We drive on asphalt rivers
and drink up dark dreams.
I pass on to you, love, my own mysteries:
From holy, for holy, to holy we be.