In the car last night, I was having a conversation with a friend about what has happened in the last three plus years.
Gradually, day by day, since the fall of 2008, a little piece of the old me has been replaced with a little piece of the new me. It’s motherhood. I lose sight of so much of what I used to be, because so few things are the same as they were before the fall of 2008, when I found out I was pregnant with Hudson, our first baby.
To use the word “lose” seems a little wrong, though, right? I’m not the same person, though I wrote a blog post or two a couple years ago insisting that I was the same person. But I’m really not. How could I possibly be?
With the introduction of motherhood to our lives, we truly learn about unconditional love. We know what it really feels like for our hearts to break. We know the feeling of all-consuming love that keep us up at night and cause us to sneak into our kids’ rooms just to smell their clean hair and hold their little hands.
With Hudson, I was just absolutely clueless. And pretty darn terrified. The night before he was born I was flooded with emotion and didn’t sleep a wink. I had no earthly clue what we were going to do.
And then Hudson taught be how to be brave. He needed me, and I knew that my love for him could pull out all kinds of bravery. I was scared, but I could do it. I wasn’t going to freeze up. I was going to do what needed to be done, even though I was terrified and didn’t know what I was doing.
Then my sweet little Hayes. Hayes helped me find confidence. This time? I did know what I was doing. I didn’t lose sleep over his arrival because I was afraid. I cherished my sleep!
He showed me that I could multi-task and keep my cool.
Hayes showed me that with confidence comes the reminder to slow down and soak it all in. I already knew how quickly the time flies, but my little Hayes was going to stay little as long as possible.
There are many, many moments in the day where I’m not soaking it all in and where I don’t feel confident- or even brave. I want to throw in the towel and find a place to sit by myself for a few quiet minutes. There are moments when I do forget that time flies and I find myself wishing time away until they are more self-sufficient and scream a lot less.
But with each day, I learn a new lesson. Aside from bravery and confidence, I have to remember to stop and let the moment pass before I react.
Hudson has the hard job of being the one that helps me learn. He’s the one that helps me conquer my fears. He’s the one that makes me extra emotional when we butt heads or when he makes me so proud I could burst. He’s the one that will run out in front of traffic first because he refused to hold my hand. He’s the one that will say a bad word first. Each first for him is also a first for me. Because I really just have to figure all of this stuff out every day as it comes.
And maybe this is why I cherish every little thing with Hayes so much. Because I’m more confident in myself this time, and I remind myself to just breathe and take it all in.
Just as each baby is different, I’m different, too. And my relationship with each of them is completely different.
And there’s just no possible way that I’m the same person that I was four years ago. I see less and less of the “old Erin” each day. And I am so thankful for these boys and the sweet lessons they’re teaching me.