And my clothes are folded on the chair,
And mother switches off the light,
I’ll still be 11 months-old tonight.
But from the very break of day,
Before the children rise and play,
Before the darkness turns to gold,
Tomorrow, I’ll be 1 year old.
1 kiss when I wake,
1 candle on my cake.
We’re feeling the bittersweet moment once again of what it is to have a baby teetering on the edge of toddlerhood. While Reed has been properly ‘toddling’ for the past two months, we are still not ready for these grand milestones, no matter how much we prepare for them in advance. Last July 7th was spent watching Woody Allen’s “To Rome with Love” at the Violet Crown Cinema, and assuring all the other members of the audience that despite appearances, I wasn’t due for another week, and not to worry. I recall spicy Mexican favourites at a romantic dinner with Grant, followed by a very long walk home, and of course, my water breaking at around 4am (not-so-strangely, my water has broken with each and every child between 4-6 am).
While there will be no such wakefulness this evening (no audible boom and subsequent drenching of the bedsheets), there will be stirrings of a different kind: the nudge of my gorgeous baby boy as he awakes from slumber, grabbing his Mama to nurse in the night. These are the special moments that I get to share with Reed all to myself, the bond between mother and child that we share countless times per day… the moments that feed and uplift my heart and manage to break it all at the same time. As I watch him grow, I close my eyes and try to re-imagine all the moments there have been along the way this past year, my favourites of which have been those times when we are together, when all I have to do is hold him – to watch the rise and fall of his chest and the flutter of his eyelids as he dreams. Tomorrow there will be countless kisses when he wakes…one candle on his cake…and wishes for him to grow big, healthy and strong. For now, there is the promise of tears (of which there are already so many), gentle rocking in the crook of my arm, and in my heart, the deepest gratitude and appreciation to the Lord above. I know now – as I did one year ago – that being Reed’s mama (and Alina and Finnlagh’s too!) is the greatest gift on this green earth. Loving my babies will always, always be enough.