Mila turned 11 months yesterday which seems like a strange but poignant milestone.
I don’t often write about parenthood which is probably odd but it all still feels very new to me and (for once) I find I have a hard time finding the words. Parenthood and pandemic are so intrinsically connected for me that one without the other is unfathomable. I’ve never done “normal” things with Mila–had play dates with friends, introduced her to kids her age, taken her to the store to run quick errands. We barely use the stroller Bryan and I were both so hellbent on getting after months of research, and I suppose that has as much to do with the winter as it does our current situation (also for a quick walk I find the carrier much easier). Sometimes I worry that my anxiety is increasing as a result and that it’ll be difficult to adjust to a world without Covid. When will I feel comfortable taking Mila with me to go places? What will it feel like to do everyday things without the constant worry that hangs over my head?
I’m plagued with decision making and the fact that there are simply no right answers, just risks and varying comfort levels. Mine aren’t yours, yours aren’t mine. I’ve accepted where I am but the lack of concrete answers to a never-ending scenario is daunting. I am, however, elated by the news that vaccine rollouts will happen sooner than expected; take me to May and here is my arm.
Parenthood has changed me, but I can’t figure out how. I just know that my brain is wired differently now. Sometimes I can’t wait to put Mila down for the night so I can get some things accomplished, and then I hear her cry in her crib and I’m happy because I know my touch and voice and heartbeat soothe her. And so I rock her in my arms and I hum and run my fingers through her hair and wonder how it’s possible to have created something so perfect.
Motherhood requires a strength I never knew I possessed; a love I didn’t think possible. But it also depletes me—emotionally, physically, spiritually. I suppose that is, in and of itself, parenting at its core.
Maybe I do have the words after all.