Which means only two more months before a year has passed.
I can tell you this – holding this baby girl, feeling the
soft, rounded babyness of her little body in my arms, sends a euphoric wave
through me every.single.time.
She and I are so connected, so inextricably linked by the
bonds of nurture and nature both, that I feel most myself when she is lifted
into my arms once again. I feel a physical release, a softening, as though the
tension of day to day pressures melts away, absorbed by the singular focus of
nourishing this tiny being who knows no safer place than the cradle of my arms.
I don’t mean to romanticise it, truly I don’t. There are
times she is hefted onto my hip as I charge through the to-do of my day, where
her weight can be suffocating. But mostly, picking her up is a signal for me to
slow down and just be. Not only do I want to give in to those moments of stillness,
I need to.
And though my fierce and primal connection to my baby might
seem at the exclusion of the other two precious souls, my boys, I die in equal measure
when their skinny arms are thrown around my neck, when their heads tilt
backwards in the joy of a shared joke. My connection to each of my children is
separate and unique and absolutely equal. But necessarily different.
And if ever I feel that pang of being one little mumma stretched
too far, I remind myself that they each enjoyed the singular intensity of being
my baby. They will each have had a turn to be the primary pull of my focus.
In one way or another, it evens out.
And where I lack one on one time with Harlow, the breech has
been filled by two adoring and endlessly fascinating big brothers. Never one to
miss the action, Harlow wears grooves into the floor following them around. At
any time, you can expect her to be commando crawling a path directly into the
eye of the storm. And if she hears their voices while I’m nursing her to sleep,
she’ll promptly detach from the boob and call out, “Baba ba!” Excruciatingly cute.
As cute (and fast!) as the commando crawl is, I look forward
to the time she begins crawling properly. Babies with full tummies who spend
all their time lying on that tummy? Have a tendency to upchuck. And then crawl
through it. Also, a baby wearing the shame of your uncleaned floors on the
front of her cute outfit day in and day out is unsettling. Yes, I could clean those floors
more often….or Harlow could learn to crawl properly. Geez.
Last time we checked, Harlow is a 70th percentile
kind of baby. And her brothers were the same. Her chub seems to have a different
quality though. The boy’s bellies had a kind of solid robustness whereas Harlow’s
belly reminds me more of…well, mine. Which sucks. I know women store fat differently
to men but this soon? Seems unfair. I’ll be warning Harlow off the Coke, that’s
In other news, I really love this baby. And I want her to
stay at this stage a bit longer. Two teeth, mummummum and daddaddad, and the
best whole body snuggle you ever felt in your life.