Babies are hard

Molly turns 2 on Sunday. It’s crazy! And it’s also awesome. I sometimes miss holding her like a baby and I sometimes miss her sleeping on my chest, but no part of me actually wishes she were a baby again. I love that she’s talking and making jokes and laughing and playing and running and jumping and everything that she does now. Most of all, though, I love that we interact now in a way that feels reciprocal. I don’t always know what she’s saying or what she’s asking me for, and I feel bad that that frustrates her, but for the most part our experiences with each other offer so much tangible connection that these frustrating moments feel like small crosses to bear. In comparison to her time as a baby, there’s no question. When she was a baby, I never felt anything close to the connection I feel to her now. I felt like I gave and gave and gave and she took and took and took. I worry that this sounds selfish, as if I only feel so close to her now because she reciprocates, but it’s true. I don’t think it’d be possible to be a truly loving parent if there weren’t some pay back. At least I couldn’t be one. The pay back now is immeasurable. I feel like sometimes it’s even more gratifying because the beginning was so hard. It’s now that I understand why people do this again and again.

When I read this today, I cried. I knew I wasn’t alone in my thoughts, but I think he’s right that it’s not talked about enough. I’m not sure it can be talked about enough. Those first three months, at a minimum, are pretty damn brutal. But then you get a deeper love than you knew was possible. And it’s awesome.


3 Responses to “Babies are hard”

  1. 1 Tammy February 28, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    How precious Kate!

  2. 2 megan February 28, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    Can I just say: Amen! Having recently gone through those first 3 months, again, I agree they suck sooooo much. But thankfully, unlike last time, I know it will get better and better and maybe someday I’ll love this little alien as madly as I love my former-alien-turned-real-live-person. I think it happens around 18 months — when language starts to appear. Totally agree it changes everything. And get ready: it keeps getting better after 2! Happy birthday, Molly!

  3. 3 fritzandfrankie March 6, 2014 at 9:42 am

    Exactly. Thanks for sharing this and for the link, which was terrific. I agree 100%. I had a super hard time with Fritz when he was a baby. I often thought about how much I’d rather be at work than at home with that screaming maniac. It was easier with Frankie, but on the first of the year this past year I woke up at 8:30 or so and thought about how rested I felt and that we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Once they are little people (which still has its own challenges) it just seems so much less oppressive. I do feel like 2 is just about the age where things start to turn around. I miss the cuddles of having a baby and how precious they are but it’s just such a tremendous amount of work. And the lack of sleep! Don’t even get me started on that 🙂

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February 2014

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