You have been such a blessing and light in our lives Blake. In the depths of your newborn months it was hard for me to imagine that clingy, demanding little baby ever turning into an independant, secure little boy… but here we are! You are such a fun, friendly and accepting child and we couldn’t be prouder of you.
In the last year we have seen so much more of your personality develop. You are our little comedian making us laugh with your funny faces and silly dances at every opportunity. You never mind being front and centre and love playing with other children in groups big and small. More and more we are seeing your affectionate nature come through.
Since the birth of your sister I have noticed you are extremely tactile and you love holding her hand, touching her soft hair and giving her kisses. I cannot get over just how much you adore her! I hope that bond continues to be strengthened through the years to come. You also have a lovely little habit of touching your eyelashes to help yourself back into sleep when you wake at night. And since we moved into our new home in June you have happily been sleeping in your own bed (in our room) all night. I missed you so much at first, it was strange seeing you dreaming away without me next to you.
This has been your year of increasing independance and growth. You rarely let anything phase you, you’re always open to new experiences and opportunities happily going with whatever we have planned. Even during the hospital trip when your finger was bitten by the dog next door, you barely even cried and your trademark smile was everpresent.
You inspire me with your fearlessness. You really live in the present moment, and that is a great place to be my friend. You are such a gorgeous, spontaneous, cheeky and loving little boy and we are all mesmorised by you. Just keep being you Blake, don’t ever change.
Since we moved house I have been slowly organising myself for your arrival. My days are always busy with your brother and sister and their needs and wants, but you, my darling girl, are never far from my mind. I often walk around the house with my hand absentmindedly pushing against your little feet that like to prod out against my skin. Or when I am sitting down my shirt is always up so I can feel you skin to skin. I also think about you every day. I wonder what you will look like, and how chubby you’ll be, if you’ll have hair and if your features will be similar to your siblings.
I wonder about your birth a lot. I have written a plan, and I have discussed it with you, but whether everything goes as planned remains to be seen. Hannah and Blake will be joining us in the birthing room to welcome you into the world. They are getting very excited now and tell me my belly is getting bigger every day! Blake often asks if I can push you out already and Hannah is beyond thrilled that there is only weeks to go rather than the months and months she has been counting down. We have been preparing for your birth and also the days and weeks after your arrival by watching lots of videos and reading lots of books about labour, birth, newborns and babycare.
Hannah in particular has had several things she wanted to do during this pregnancy and one was to paint my bump after seeing a photo of a mother with her belly painted on my computer. So when I was 34 weeks pregnant I bought some body paint and stencil kits and let Hannah go for it. She had a ball and it was such a lovely bonding activity for us, I hope you enjoyed it too baby.
I have begun to pack my birth centre bag and have washed and put away all your teeny newborn clothes. I have masses of breast pads and maternity pads and muslin wraps for those heady babymoon days. And I am so looking forward to those first weeks after birth with you. With Hannah they were too distressing and with Blake they were too busy, so this time, it will be just your daddy, your sister, your brother and I (and a few very close friends and family) gazing at you with adoration in those first couple of weeks.
And hopefully the day that we finally meet you is not so far away. I have begun to experience pre-labour and I have a feeling I will not be pregnant on your 15 August due date. You are also a lot lower – not quite engaged but definitely in my pelvis – than either your brother or sister were at this stage so that is causing quite a bit of pressure and separation in my pelvis. I’m still getting the random itching and restless legs which combined with the massive varicose veins in my left leg, the constant Braxton Hicks and the need to pee every hour and it becomes pretty obvious that I’m not getting much sleep! As beautiful and as incredible as pregnancy is, it is extremely hard work growing another human being in your own body. I fully intend to appreciate these last days of this pregnancy but some more [comfortable] sleep would be amazing!
Since this may be the last time I grow a new person in my belly I have been wanting to do some things to commemorate the occasion. However, time seems to be passing by so quickly and I haven’t had a chance to do half the things I imagined I would. Luckily for me, I have a truly gorgeous community of mothers around me who organised a very special Blessingway for us recently. They pampered me, and each wrote a special birth affirmation on a banner for me and then we all sat in a circle and did a special wrist binding ceremony. I love looking at my little wool bracelet and knowing I have the support and positive birthing vibes from mamas who have all given birth before and know what I’m going thorugh. My very good friend was also kind enough to do a belly casting for me and I was so excited! I have been wanting one ever since I was pregnant with Hannah and now I finally have one. These little events have certainly made these last difficult days of pregnancy more enjoyable.
So baby girl, enjoy hanging out in my womb for the next little while, I’ll be ready and waiting to welcome you with open arms whenever you decide to enter this wonderful world of ours.
How could I have known what being a mother meant until I became one? I had no idea that your lives would change mine in ways I could never have expected.
This is my 6th Mother’s Day as a mama. For me it is an anniversary and celebration of babies in my belly, in my arms and in my heart. Mother’s Day means holding the space for all of these special ones within me everyday and never forgetting the blessings I have been given. Events that at the time seemed too difficult, too painful and too miserable to ever be viewed in a positive light, I can now see were just preparations for my mothering journey. They allowed me to walk a new path and become a new person. And the moments I have experienced of pure joy, happiness and bliss since then have only served to compound that understanding for me.
I could never have imagined that choosing to become a mother would mean that I would be instead making a decision to change myself. Things I believed in so strongly before are now not important and things I had no idea existed have become my life mantra. I have allowed myself to surrender into the beauty and the sacrifice of motherhood and I am a better person for it.
There is nothing I feel deserves my time more than to spend it with you – my children. There is nowhere I would rather be, no regrets about my choices, and no changes that I want to make in how I choose to live my life right now. I am grateful beyond measure that I am blessed with you – each of you – and it is only through becoming your mama that I know the true meaning of that word.
Thank you for your shining smiles. I am thankful that I have the pleasure of seeing them every day.