Thursday, December 23, 2010

For Lisa, who will probably never see this because she's too busy having a baby right now

You are minutes-from-Mama. You are minutes from losing everything you thought you knew about yourself. But this isn't about that.

We were chatting last night and all this morning. Then you got quiet. I hope that means exciting things are happening right now. Maybe they've already happened. Maybe there's a Superbaby in your arms?

You are, I believe, hard on yourself, and sometimes even harder on others. Your standards are so high; you expect excellence. I want to caution you gently that these first few days? They'll be harder on you than you are even on yourself. Nobody's more determined than you; you'll find your way through it. It's okay to be soft right now, to flail, to lump up and fold over and flop about, like a baby who needs snuggles and reassurance. Tuck in tight together.

You are going to feel vulnerable and unskilled in uncomfortably unfamiliar ways, but you'll also realize that you are, of course, a natural. Sometimes, you'll feel both at once. You can chalk it up to the exhaustion, but that's not the reason. But make sure you sleep, anyway. It will never be more true in your life: sleep really does make everything better.

I know you miss your own mom so much right now. She'd be cheering you on, and crying, of course. She'd be proud of you. You've had a tumultuous year -- but what an ending. The rest of us are poor substitutes, but in place of your mom you should remember you're surrounded by women who will lift you up in the unknowable moments, and kvell in the miraculous ones.

You'll never again be that woman you were this morning. She's really gone forever. But it's an alchemy, and you're so much more, now.

Congratulations, Mama. Pin It