Thursday, July 10, 2014

Dear Everett Sage: one month old

Dear Everett Sage, 

You are one month old today. We decided to take you to Yosemite for your one month birthday. I like to tell your dad that I will probably never be the type of mom who does a lot of crafts or sews you a halloween costume, but I will be the type of mom that takes you on adventures, I can promise you that. We know you won't remember this trip at all, but this is our first of many family vacations, and we are celebrating you, even though you don't know the difference. I am finding so much joy exploring my favorite place with you in tow, and although we have seen the most beautiful views, we kind of enjoying looking at you the most. 

This is the first letter I am writing you since you were born. Now I know who you are. I know that you have the softest little hairs on your head, that your big, blue eyes like to gaze at the world with curiosity even though you can't see too far yet, and that you sometimes laugh in your sleep and it is the most wonderful sound. I know the intricacies of each little feature you have as I like to outline with my finger your nose, lips, chin, ears, fingers, toes, and your two little dimples. Your skin is the softest and you have the best smell. Just writing this letter to you brings tears to my eyes, because what a transformative month it has been. I am a mother, your mother, and it will be that way now and forever. Everyone told me ahead of time about the immensely profound love I would experience when I met my little baby, and it still couldn't prepare me for what it is like to love another human so deeply and completely. 

This month has also been challenging. As nothing could prepare me for the amazing love that having a newborn brings, nothing could also prepare me for the challenges. The lack of sleep and struggles with breastfeeding have left me feeling overwhelmed. For the first couple of weeks, as each day passed, I would rejoice a little, because it meant that we were surviving, but I also mourned the passing of each day, because that meant that you were getting a little bit older and bigger. I would feel burdened and like I needed a break, and then I would take a shower and miss being near you. I thought about how I wanted you to stay a tiny infant forever, and then irrationally worried about you hating me during your teenage years or going off to college and not coming home to visit often enough.  It was an emotional roller coaster, and I am happy to say that at the end of the first month, I am a little more sane. Through all the ups and downs, the beauty and joy have far outweighed the challenges, and I am just so happy you are here. I try to savor each moment, knowing that it will all go by too fast, as so many tell me, but I do look forward to the future, for all that lies ahead as we get to know you more each day. We are so excited to see your personality unfold. 

Today, on your one month birthday, we spent the morning lounging by the Merced River, taking turns walking across it and sitting with you under a shady tree. We laid on a blanket and you napped on my chest for about an hour, and I thought about how different this trip to Yosemite is from so many others we've taken, a small reminder of how much our lives have changed so much in the past month. I lay there enveloped by the granite walls of the valley, with majestic views in every direction, and I couldn't help but continually come back to the view of you, my boy, on my chest, which was seemingly more beautiful than all the rest, because it was perfect; you are perfect, and my life has become abundantly more beautiful because you are in it.


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