Gluttony and Roley Thighs

I guess I should preface my thoughts with a fact.

Ted's New Year's resolution was to not get his wife pregnant.

At that point, when that resolution was made, I had been pregnant for a good amount of our marriage. We had been married just over 3 years and had 2 children.

Ted is starting nursing school this week and he is also working as a school bus driver while enjoying the church calling of the Young Men's secretary. Time is of the essence and we will not be expecting any new bundles of joy until at least 2 years from now... give or take a few months. This means that Meredith and her next sibling will be at least two and a half years apart, but possibly closer to 3.

Seems really ideal. And it is! By some people's standards this is wonderful spacing developmentally, financially, and for a mother's body. But for me? It's tough.

You see, Ted is 1 of 6. 1 of 6... in 7 years. I am 1 of 5 and the last 3 were in 3 years. It's not that we WANT to have children so very close, certainly not THAT close (and probably not that many) but the maternal beast deep inside me craves the roley thighs. And the fuzzy head. Oh, and the teeeeeny fingers. And let's not forget the early months heavy with firsts.

But I have come to terms with the fact that our home is about to be baby free for at least 2 years. For someone who had 2 babies in about 16 months, that's quite a statement. As of late, babies are a way of life around here. But this admission comes with confessions and bad habits.

At 7 months exactly, Ted and I, the new, proud parents we were, began sleep training Gwenna. Her bed time was 8.30 and she was expected to respect it and sleep through the night. By way of our intelligent methods, she took to this without a problem.

Now Meredith is another story. We began sleep training little Miss Meredith at 8 months (a little later but at 7 months we were in the process of a move) and she started out alright. But then the realization that we were going to be without baby for many moons sunk in and I pulled my baby back to my bosom. Meredith is now rocked to sleep most nights. This was a cardinal sin in our house when Gwenna was a baby. And it's not just because we've become more lenient with our second child; it's because the mom has a need to extend the feeling of a steady breathing, floppy limbed angel cuddling into her while said angel drifts off to dreamland.

As I sat and rocked her this evening my mind wandered to when my grandma, my daughters' great grandma, was visiting in April. She asked if she could rock Meredith (then Olivia) to sleep and I told her if she could do it, I would encourage it. She did and I was surprised since it was the first time Meredith had ever met her. I took a picture that I never have to look at because the image is emblazoned into my mind as a memory I can go to whenever I feel the need. My Goggy rocking my (then) little baby to sleep in an over-sized white and blue checkered rocker at my sister's house. It's the visual epitome to me of what I am trying to extend. The essence of baby I am trying to draw into Meredith's impending second year. Because in just about 3 months (3 months!) she will turn 1 and she probably won't want to be rocked to sleep any more. And even if she still allows such maternal follies, I probably should give up the habit - as much as I hate to admit it - long before then. ...

So she can learn how to soothe herself, lull her own self into quite slumber. ...

Without me.

But I'm not going to have any wrinkly feet to ogle for quite some time, by my standards. No absurdly minute fingernails to dread cutting. No seedy and so NOT stinky diapers to change. And no baby that is smaller than my torso. My baby now reaches from lap all the way over my shoulder. She's entirely too large already even though she's in the bottom 25th percentile. She's becoming not a baby.

So if I show no restraint when I gobble up her roley little thighs and if I gluttonously rock her for hours with no regard to sharing her infancy with my husband, it's all in the name of extending this stage that I am going to miss in a few short months. The years are going by so fast even when the days sometimes drag. If I just remember that my babies aren't going to be babies much longer, it may be the other way around. But only if I'm lucky.


Erin said...

I know...watching them become Not Babies is sad business...but at least your body is getting a break :)

Suzanne M said...

So are we one in the same or what? Luckily for us since Im now staying home is the fact that we've deleted a few years off of next baby's homecoming. Originally, it was to be when Davey finished school (as in all the way up to his masters) in 5 years. Now we are looking at 2 more years. Much better. But if I had the money, Id probably just have my kids right on top of each other. I have so much loved this 16 month gap. And Im going to have a hard time letting my babies grow and not quickly adding another one. :)

Jewel said...

I know. My heart breaks when I see how big Jack is getting--yet at the same time, it's fun to watch him growing and learning and progressing the way he should. But when I try to scoop him up on my lap and snuggle him, but he's just too big--it's a trial. I miss it! And I'm guilty of still trying to rock him to sleep--occasionally. It's just one of those moments where you can appreciate their smell and the feel of them on your lap. And it goes too fast.