One week after my son was born, I wrote this:
And that’s how I feel again.
I can’t talk about my daughter yet.
It makes sense because how special the past few days have been is a hard thing to put into words, because I’m really pretty exhausted (so forgive me if I’m not forming actual sentences), and because I want to look at my little girl’s face and her ears and the little swirl of dark hair on her forehead, not at letters typed on a computer screen. I’m scared I’ll say something not-quite-right because I’m tired and the words aren’t where I want them to be, and then those words will get twisted and I’ll end up wishing I hadn’t said them at all. These feelings are too precious for me to express any way other than just as they are.
Writing about parenthood isn’t always an easy thing. It’s not for me, anyway; I spend so much time wrestling with – and talking to Kendrick about – what to share and what to keep, and for the most part am comfortable with my choice, which is to share photos and videos of what we “do” as a family, but to keep the focus on my experiences as a mother, not on what my children think and dream of and who they actually are. That’s for them to share if they want to one day (and just because this bears emphasis: I don’t fault mothers who write about their families and choose to share more; I think it’s a very personal decision, and this is what we’ve decided feels best for our family).
So when something this big happens to my heart and my head that is so tied to my children I have to reexamine what I’m comfortable with, because it’s important to me that I will look back and be at peace with the words that I spoke about the people who mean more to me than anyone else in the world.
And it’s also important to me to speak. Because motherhood is wonderful and precious and also hard and overwhelming, and it can mean everything to know that others feel just as you do.
I learned so much this week. I am so excited to share it.
But just for today, just for now, I think I’ll wait.
So let’s talk about something else. Like Good Things That Happened In The Hospital That Were Not The Baby.
They mostly have to do with food.