We have less than a week to go until Rylan’s first birthday. I find myself almost daily looking back on our first photos as a family. The speed at which babies change in year one is nothing short of remarkable. His budding personality and infectious smile, especially his little smirk and what I call “mom eyes,” are what motivate me even on the toughest days.
Year one is messy. Messy in the literal sense (So. Many. Diapers.) and messy emotionally. You go from only taking care of yourself to giving 150 percent of yourself to this little being, wanting to give even more if that is humanly possible. Exhaustion is real. As is questioning–everything. My return to working full time out of the home was tougher than I prepared for mentally. I still struggle, especially on Mondays after a fun weekend, with leaving him five days a week.
Year one is also truly rewarding. Who knew the pride that comes with watching your baby find its hands? Rolling over? Forget about it. My iPhone is full of videos from that day. Below are some more of my personal year one realities. I’d love to hear about yours as well.
- Worrying. About everything. All the time.
- Cringe-worthy Google searches.
- Humorous and tear-stained text message sessions with other moms. At 2 a.m.
- Sleep. There is never enough.
- Friendships changed in wonderful and difficult ways.
- Complete reliance on your partner, falling in love over and over again.
- More disagreements with your partner than ever before. See #4 lack of sleep observation.
- So much judgement, from yourself and others (other moms being the harshest sometimes).
- An Amazon Prime addiction.
- A dresser drawer of t-shirts and sweats where dry clean only tops used to live.
- A hot shower behind a locked bathroom door = divine escape.
- Quiet nights and weekends at home as a family are deeply fulfilling…realizing it is ok to miss out on things.
- Cutting a little too loose when you do stay out past 8 p.m. I’m in dry clean only clothes people!
- Feeling overwhelmed with pride for the littlest achievements. My baby clapped today!
- Running out of space for all of the pictures and videos on your phone.
- Wondering what the heck you did with all your free time before baby.
- Gaining an entirely new perspective on life’s blessings…and regaining it over and over again when you see a single mom, or a sick child or a family desperately wanting a child.
- Love. Gut wrenching, tear evoking, soul changing love.
Rylan, we’re in utter awe of how fast this year has gone. I want you to reach for every star in the sky and promise to help you in every way we can. But my heart also drops a little that our first year with you is nearly complete. You were and still are the most incredible baby. We love you tremendously and can’t wait to embrace the next year with you.