That’s Finn, just after he was born. We were staring at each other from our beds.
On this Mother’s Day, I’ve been feeling a bit broody, in the British sense of the word. I’ve been missing having a baby around. It’s a very impractical longing. I’m almost 40. Even if I were able to get pregnant, the chances of there being something wrong with either the baby or my pregnancy would be fairly high. And it’s not like we have spare change these days, so adding to our family would practically make us destitute.
Besides that, so much baby stuff sucks. No sleep. Breastfeeding. Diaper bags. That smelly cheesy stuff that grows in their fat rolls. Strollers. Car seats. Potty training. I need to remind myself of all this. The first couple of years of a child’s life are not soft focus, despite what you see in the picture above. They’re sharp lines, blurred colors, and stark negatives.
But then there are the sweet outfits, and the funny faces, and trying foods for the first time…somebody stop me. Today, I found on my computer a ton of old pictures from when Jack and Finn were little (a perfect discovery for Mother’s Day), and I’ve been teary-eyed as I’ve gone through them. Of course, they show the wonderful side of childhood. Those pictures are the memories I chose to preserve, the ones that made me laugh, touched my heart, or marked a special occasion. We don’t keep pictures of the bad times, do we?
The times that I captured were the times that neared perfection. And I think that’s where my broodiness is coming from. It’s like I want one more chance to make it perfect. One more chance to raise the perfect child, be the perfect mother, do everything perfectly and correctly. I’d like to try different feeding techniques, or early education exercises, or try one of the new fancy strollers. There are so many things I see at baby stores, or read about, that make me think “If I’d only had that, imagine how much fun raising a baby would have been!”
Third times a charm, right?
It’s funny that I want another chance to be perfect, since I’m not a huge fan of perfect people. I much prefer those who are willing to show their flaws and ugly sides and imperfections. If I had another child and tried to raise it Pinterest-style, I’d either fail spectacularly (because I’m lousy at doing things correctly), or I’d sink into an obnoxious, insufferable pit of perfection (because I can be pretty darn determined at times).
I guess it’s best to just stick with what I’ve got. Because really, what I’ve got is pretty darn great.