Tag Archives: parenting

Stay my baby

illloveyouforever4

Today my son is 6 months old. 6 months old. 6 months old. It sounds so foreign. It feels so unreal.  In the last month, Matteo now rolls over, has started to reach for me, is now eating fruits and vegetables, attempted his first sippy cup, and just yesterday, his two bottom teeth started poking through. Whaaaat?  I am his biggest cheerleader, celebrating and encouraging and hollering for each milestone, but that one sick part of me is saying Noooo! Waiiitttt! Stopppp! Don’t get any bigger. Stay my baby forever.

It’s already going by so fast. Now I know what all these mothers and fathers are always complaining about. My own father always told me one of the hardest things for him was when he realized I was getting too old to watch cartoons with him anymore on Saturday mornings, all snuggled up on the couch. I want to tell him I’ll watch cartoons with you, Daddy. I’m never too old. I’ll always be your baby.  Because now I know just how bittersweet it was for my parents to watch my brother, sister, and I grow up. The word ‘Bittersweet’ rings so fitting and so true to my newest Mommy Dilemma. I am extremely proud and amazed and happy that my son  is growing so fast, that he is so strong, that he is excelling beautifully. But I am so sad that some day soon, he won’t fit in my arms when I cradle him, he won’t hold tightly onto my fingers or stroke my face gently, or look up at me adoringly while I am feeding him his ba-ba.

There’s going to be a time that his eyes won’t light up when I walk into a room, a time when I won’t be the girl that puts the biggest smile on his face, a time where he won’t think every single word I say to him is so funny and interesting. There is going to be a time where he is going to be embarrassed by the millions of kisses I give to him each day and he is going to start to push me away. There is going to be a time when I can no longer dress him in all his cute outfits, no longer watch him splish splash and giggle his sweet baby giggle in the bathtub, no longer see his little legs and feet dance in delight as I come near him, no more mommy and Matteo reading time, no more morning selfies sent to Daddy each morning to brighten his work day, no more adoring looks of love that he sends my way no matter what he is doing, just to make sure I’m looking.

The way my son looks at me now is something I wish I could capture in a glass jar and treasure forever. I might not need that glass jar though. That mesmerized look, that twinkle  in my son’s eyes when he looks at me will be forever imprinted in my brain and engraved in my heart. It is something I could never forget. It makes me feel like no matter what else I have done in life, I have done at least one thing right.

The one piece of advice I would give any woman about to become a mother is to treasure every single moment you have with them because it really goes by in the blink of an eye. I feel like I was just in the hospital giving birth to this beautiful gift from God and now I am pulling down the 6 to 9 month clothes bin and staring at it in disbelief. Each day with Matteo is a new discovery, a new sound, a new object he favors, a new unveiling of one of the many pieces that will help mold him into the man he will one day become. ‘Man.’ My tiny little boy will one day be a man. Unfathomable. But maybe I will have loved him just right and cheered for him just right and  taught him just right so that he will be this incredible, loving, smart, loyal, and amazing man. And though I will be tremendously proud of that man, he will still always be my precious little baby to me.

 

 

 

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Mommy see, Mommy do

Rookie. Newbie. First-time Mom. That’s me.  It is painfully obvious that I am not a veteran. I might as well be wearing it as a sort of scarlet letter branded across my forehead. That’s me- the one in the waiting room at the doctors office with my notepad of questions to ask the doctor. After almost 6 months now of my Matteo’s life- I think his doctor knows me well enough that at the end of her required tests and check lists, she sits down and says ” ok, what questions did you bring for me today ? “

Yes, I still sit in the backseat with my son while my husband is driving. Yes, I still sleep with the monitor literally next to my face and continue to run in his room at least twice a night just to get a closer look and to see him breathing up close. Yes, I listen to every guideline and rule book out there.  My doctor’s advice and opinions are like the bible to me. Yes, I jump 10 feet in the air and suffer mini-heart attacks when Matteo coughs or cries really hard or makes a new sound. Yes, I read book after book and article after article on the newest philosophies on child care and ways to always stimulate your baby’s mind and help develop the smartest babies. Yes, I read a new book to my son every single day even though he can’t possible understand any of it yet. Yes, I constantly ask questions to other moms, to my mother and my mother-in-law, constantly ask my doctor if the way I’m doing something is right, constantly over-think and worry and stress if I’m doing a good job and if others think I’m doing a good job. 

Yes, I’m that girl. I’ve always been. Of course I like to think I’m not – but I’ve always been a please-approve-of-what-I’m-doing girl. I’m a student down to the bone. I read, I analyze, I research everything. Having my first baby brings it out in me even more. There’s not one item in my house for my son that I have not researched thoroughly and hmmed and hawed over before buying.  Preparing my registry for my baby shower was like a full -time job. I drove my husband crazy, my sister crazy, my best friends crazy, my cousins crazy. I did not stop. I needed to have the very best, the most practical, the safest, the cutest, and I needed to be very sure before adding anything to the registry. 

I downloaded app after app after app during my pregnancy to ensure I was doing all I could do, that I was finding out everything there was to know about my child’s development and growth. I bought one of those at-home heartbeat monitors to check on the baby and I did it more times then I’d like to admit. I just had to make sure he was safe. My own personal angel that was sent to me from heaven. You bet I was going to do anything and everything I could to protect him and keep him safe. After all, I have been waiting for him all my life.

So yes , I am a first-time mom and I’m a little crazy. I’m a little irrational. I’m a little over-bearing and over-protective . So what. It’s more like a badge of honor to me, than a scarlet letter . I wear it loud and proud. I am proud that I am new at this, proud that I want to give my son the very best life has to offer, proud that I would move heaven and earth to give him anything he needs, proud that I would walk through fire to keep him safe and protected, and proud that I’m doing a damn good job for a rookie, if I do say so myself.  

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Pursuing the dream(s) : BIG and small

September 2012- Married the man of my dreams and high school crush. Had the Big fat Italian wedding followed by dream honeymoon in Atlantis,Bahamas -CHECK !
February 2014- gave birth to a beautiful, healthy baby boy and named him Matteo, my all-time favorite boys name. CHECK!
To say those two milestones completed my life is an understatement. I was able to believe again. I was able to be whole again, and whole in a way that I never even knew I wasn’t.
Those dreams, small as they may seem to many ambitious others, were as big and imperative as they can get to me. It was all I ever wanted – to be a wife and to be a mother. And they came true! But don’t misunderstand, the road wasn’t an easy one . Our wedding song was ” God bless the broken road that led me straight to you.” It was the most fitting, most perfect way to capture what led my husband and I to each other. Obstacles were always in the way; hard-hitting road blocks deliberately placed to deter me from my dreams.
For starters -a previous relationship that scarred me so bad, I didn’t think I would ever be able to love myself, let alone anyone else ever again. I was a broken person that only my husband could heal. Then after our magical and perfect wedding came a heart-wrenching miscarriage. But then the light shined again and I was pregnant with my angel Matteo. Out of nowhere, two months before I give birth, I find out the company I’ve worked for for 11 years was being sold and I was laid off. I had planned to work there for my whole career. It was a great job and I was going to be able to work from home and raise my baby myself.
The blessing in disguise here was that I had more time to focus on my baby, and more time to finally stop putting off this fear of putting myself out there and daring to pursue my last and final life-long dream: to write. And not just write, but write publicly and not be so intimidated and bound by fear. I continuously have held myself back from putting myself out there and facing the unknown. I have always been a writer. I wrote poetry and wrote in journals since I was a little girl. It’s been my third and final life-long dream to one day write a book of my own, or publish a collection of my poetry, or now in 2014 – create a successful blog career.
No matter what happens, I will know this- that if I am successful or not, I at least made the first brave and raw step of putting my most private thoughts and feelings out there in cyber space for all the world to see. Though that may not make any dream come true, it does contribute to the 2nd dream. I can show my child that you should never give up on your dreams, no matter what obstacles stand in the way, no matter how big or small those dreams may be. The art of it all is to continue to believe, pursue, and never stop dreaming.

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