Thursday, September 10, 2009

I Wish Her Heart Still Was in Rhyming

The joke's going to be on me if Jack's little brothers/sisters read this entry in the distant future.


This morning, while I was sitting on the floor, by the front door...

Jack has taken to choking on his spit. And since he's a mobile little dude lately, I don't always get to see what magical things he decides to put in his mouth. Thus, sometimes the spit choking can be perceived to be bottle-cap/razor-blade/live-insect choking. You know. It's mother stuff, worrying like that. 

I ran to the little choking baby and started patting him on the back. Hard. He cried because I hit him, then I cried because I realized that it was just the spit choking him again. No baby heimlich needed. We both sobbed, sitting right in front of the door - Jack occasionally paused to laugh at my crying, which indicates a possible future enjoyment of others' suffering. Duly noted.

When we had both calmed down a little, I made him a bottle for his troubles. We sat on the couch and bonded in our sniffles. As I was feeding him, I came back to a topic that I've been thinking of for about nine months now - Should We Have More Flanagan Babies So I Can Baby Heimlich Them When They Don't Need It? Or, Am I Fit Enough to Be A Parent to Any More Children?

I really believe that anything that I let escape from my brain becomes public knowledge, be it in print or through spoken word. Secrets have never really been my thing.

The pregnancy was such an out-of-body experience that I never felt that my life was different from previous nine-month periods. The first few months after Jack's birth were hellacious, because I'm not good with new things (even if the new thing has an absolutely adorable round face). When the news of another baby came, I put myself into Iron Woman mode. The news of no additional baby sent me into a tailspin. And when I finally pulled up on the throttle, I realized that Jack was closer to being a year old than I ever thought I'd be able to manage.

That's when it hit me. For some misguided reason, I was subconsciously under the impression that I wouldn't be able to help my son grow. I believed, in the back of my mind, that I would do something that caused him to be put on pause forever. Not because I wanted to cherish the baby-ness of him, but because I didn't know how to transition him towards being an adult. I still don't.

My inability to imagine going through all of that again is what leads me to feeling like Jack is a one-off. He's special, he was meant to be with us, and now he's here. But, will Jack hate us if we leave him to be an only child? Caleb and I really value having siblings; my sisters and I are going to be BFFs for eternity. I just can't pretend that I'm honing my parenting skills for future children.

I keep hoping that something is going to click for me one day. The challenges have stayed equal in number, but have simply become more sundry in quality. I can now feel comfortable taking a shower when I want to, instead of having to wait while Jack's asleep and rushing a two-minute rinse down to thirty seconds. But, I constantly have nightmares about not reading to Jack enough, thus causing him to hate reading forever. The sobbing fests about hating nursing have turned into worries about letting Jack watch too much PBS Kids. Am I creating a little couch potato blob when I should be adjusting his beret for Le Petit Ecolier school?

Motherhood seems to fit many others around me like a glove. For me, motherhood is the one aspect of my life that I thought I would not have trouble with, since I feel maternal naturally; however, it is becoming my One Great Struggle in life. Not because of Jack, who is a dream, but because I'm a head case who can't see the forest for the trees.

Just let this boy get to 18 years old. And if we do decide that will be others who follow him out of my womb, let them reach an adult age as well. Maybe I should have prayed for a son like Hannah did, offering him to the Lord; then at least I could know that he would be raised well, like Samuel was.


And, on a lighter note, I discovered yesterday that I can draw a fantastic computer chair. I am the single least creative person in the entire world, but gosh darnit, I can use a pencil to recreate a pleather chair on wheels.

1 comment:

  1. Oh Holly, for what it's worth, I had similar feelings with my first (though I did not experience the difficulty of preparing for a second and then not having one). But I just wanted you to know that for me, it has been SO much more fun with two! I definitely took my time mentally preparing for another because of those inadequate feelings I felt but I think what I'm trying to say is it does get easier, in some strange way. One last thing, your little one was sent to you because you are you! I'm sure he couldn't wait to be YOUR son. You're doing fine, I'm sure. And that's my for what it's worth. You're great!