Monday, April 23, 2012

change

It has been more than a year since my last post here. More than a year and my baby girl's age has doubled. More than a year and a whole new person has been added to the planet (and our family). More than a year and I feel like a totally different person (and yet the same). What HASN'T changed, for heaven's sake?
On the day I last posted, this is what my daughter looked like:

This is what she looks like today:

And then, there is this one.

Life is different. Changed. New. The same. I still seem to be unable to plan meals. I still love to knit and feel driven to make things. I still fiercely love my girl(s). I am still a writing, spiritual, reflective type mama. What is new? Firstly, everything feels either divided or multiplied by two these days. Two times the baby giggles. Divided attention. Two times the mess, diapers, laundry. Two times the developmental trajectory. Divided personal time. Multiplied LOVE. (I know that's a total cliche. Too bad.)

I didn't expect the feeling of being divided to last much past the early weeks of parenting two. I am only four months in, and I know that is still technically quite early, but the feeling of being divided seems so permanent somehow. I feel forever changed by the fact of having two children. (To the other mommies reading this, I am sure you are just completely shocked to hear this.) Of course, the first time I was changed as well. Moments after conception I knew. I knew my life was no longer just mine. The second time that same feeling came again. This time the feeling was familiar, yet new. I needed to take care of one on the outside and one on the inside. As the inside baby grew, so did my feeling of being divided. When the time for giving birth came, I literally gave my little girl over to friends to take care of. It was her first night without me. Now that Clara is a part of our lives, my attention is constantly split in two. You could say that my attention is multiplied. It is certainly true that I am focusing on twice as many things at any given moment.

I'm getting better at the juggling. I love saying, "my girls". And I love it even more when I hear Cordelia's excited voice say, "Two girls!" There are moments of total exasperation. I'm not attending to Clara's every breath the way I was able to with Cordelia. Cordelia is coping as well as can be expected with these things. Clara doesn't know any different. And each day passes as we grow together.

To sum it all up: multiplied, divided, loss, immeasurable gain, more or less.
momalom.com

10 comments:

Jen said...

Each day you grow together. I love that. There is a necessary dividing of attention. It doesn't really change, I'm afraid. But you learn to truly enjoy the moments (fleeting though they may be) that you can spend one-on-one with one child. And, as the girls grow up, I hope you experience--as I have--that those moments are breathtaking. Just as the tiny baby toes are. And Cordelia's exclamations now. Change continues, and it doesn't get any easier. But life offers many many moments of beauty. Take them all in. And do go easy on yourself. And, thanks for joining in!

Stacia said...

I never feel like there is enough of me to go around. And I never feel like there's enough of me for me either. But I wouldn't wish for anything different. I suppose that's the irony of motherhood, just as you said.

Kelly Quinones Miller said...

I, too, still work on the divide of multiple children. I have to work at giving each of them 100% of my attention at the moments they need it and backing off when they need it. Parenting requires constant change!

Laurie said...

Yes, divided forever. Three boys divides my attention so much that I lose focus completely at times!

alita jewel said...

I agree. Divided forever for sure. And the hardest part is knowing what is left of yourself... for yourself.

Thank you for sharing this!

Alita

Cathy Reaves said...

Whoa - more then a year since you last posted. I noticed the title of your previous post was something like "falling off and getting back on". Seems appropriate and quite the natural segue and you knew you'd be coming back! Nice to meet you.

Aidan Donnelley Rowley said...

I love saying "my girls" too. And I love this post. Thank you.

Laura B. said...

Oooo I love your girls' names! And you've had quite the year! We're working on baby #2 and you've given me lots to think about.

Rudri Bhatt Patel @ Being Rudri said...

I love your last line. So much lost, but so much gained. Glad to meet you through Five for Five.

Kate said...

The divided part still irks me. I want to focus so much. But... Our girls, they're glorious.