(not the most flattering picture of me, I realize, but the kiddo on the right sure is cute)
"And when she wraps her hand
around my finger
Oh it puts a smile in my heart
Everything becomes a little clearer
I realize what life is all about"
~Martina McBride, "In My Daughter's Eyes"
Everyone told me that having a baby would change everything. And while I did believe everyone, I didn't realize just how much Cate would really change things (and she's only been here 3 weeks- well, as of tomorrow).
My perspective and way of thinking have changed quite a bit since Cate's arrival. What can I say? I love being a mom. It's not that I didn't think I wouldn't love motherhood. Or that I didn't think life would change. It's just that I feel like I have a new perspective or outlook on certain things as a result of becoming a mother.
When Eric and I first started seriously thinking about getting married, I wasn't sure exactly what my time frame for children would be...or if we'd even decide we'd want any. I was in college and focused on where my career was headed. Even in my first couple years of being a new wife and new teacher, I still wasn't sure where motherhood would fit in and how exactly my life would look. I was enjoying grad school, running, biking, devouring books, sleeping in, etc. But now that Cate is here, there's nowhere else I'd rather be in life right now than where I am. I feel like I was born to do this, to raise her. It's not about me anymore (not that anything ever was really about me, but it's just that I love her so much and care about her so much that it doesn't matter if I can't run right now, or sleep in, or stay out late going to the movies and doing other things with Eric). We're a family now and I love and welcome the change, both as a wife and a mom.
In the early weeks of being pregnant, Eric and I were obviously ecstatic (and a little scared) about starting our family. And on a couple of occasions mentioned that we'd be okay with it if Cate ended up being our only one. At that point I was still scared of the remaining months of pregnancy and terrified of delivery. Now that it's all over and I know there's nothing to be scared of, we hope that God will bless us with more children in the coming years (though we're not in any hurry to give Cate a brother or sister just yet). I don't mind the semi-sleep deprivation (though to be fair to Cate, she really is a good little sleeper...it's just the getting her up in the middle of the night to feed her part that's rough), the countless dirty diapers I've already changed, the spit up, and the being semi-house bound until Cate's a little sturdier, flu season winds down, and it's warmer outside.
I know there will be days that are more difficult than others and days when I'm sure I'll cry out of frustration. But those days will be far outweighed by the blessing that is our little girl. Cate's worth all of it and I'm so happy to be her mommy. I'd do it all again in a heartbeat.