Posted by: Ingrid | June 22, 2016

Every new beginning

One thing I didn’t anticipate with having a baby in May was that Wesley’s birth would coincide with so many things ending.  There I was with a new baby as my husband wrapped up his semester’s grading, as we took Jonathan to his end of preschool picnic, as Isaac walked across stage for his kindergarten graduation.  Mixing that much change with already swirling postpartum hormones meant that I found myself holding Wesley one day and crying because all the things were ending.

When I graduated from high school, Semisonic’s song, Closing Time, was on the radio all the time, and seemed to epitomize the feeling of approaching change that was coming. I felt like the month of May played out with that song in the background. How can my first baby be going into first grade?  How can our last baby grow so quickly and change overnight from newborn to such a little man in seven short weeks? And at the forefront of my mind with everything coming to a close was how I could choose to never have a newborn again?

I know babies.  Every two years for the past seven years I have produced a new one. I have fed them, changed them, clothed them, shuttled them to the doctor, held them when they cried and been mystified and enchanted by each of their similarities and differences.  I can answer questions about babies and am fairly confident that I could give advice. I am secure in the newborn stage; love them and keep them alive and you’re going to be okay.  You can swear in front of them and they don’t repeat what you say.  There is a deep well of forgiveness when it comes to caring for infants (thank God!).

But now we’re done, and being done with something I know is nothing short of terrifying.

I don’t know grade school politics.  I don’t know how to navigate the ups and downs of first grade relationships.  I feel like I am leaving my area of comfort and expertise with each day Wesley outgrows the newborn stage.  I know that there are all sorts of things our children are growing towards. There are sports (but if our Tee ball and baseball experience this month is any indicator as to whether I like this I am in for so much trouble), there are family camping trips and hiking in the mountains once everyone can walk and not require a pack n play.  There are big vacations like Disneyland or the Grand Canyon that are lost on an infant and toddler.  I know that there are so many things up ahead that our family hasn’t been able to do because of having a nursing baby/napping baby/child in diapers, but I don’t know those things.

I don’t like change. I don’t like endings.  I don’t like not knowing how to do things.  I don’t like feeling like there is a whole new landscape to navigate because I don’t like feeling like I might fail. It’s hard to willingly let a season of life go, to close that chapter in our lives, even though I know that there are new things waiting on the horizon. Good and new things that require closure before they can truly unfold. I have to trust this is true because knowing this is the end feels a little like a free fall.

Closing time, every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.

Sweet Baby Wesley b&w

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Responses

  1. No one knows how to do any of that the first time around. We all take it one day at a time, ask for advice when needed and pray a lot. I love you and miss those sharing days.

    • We miss you too! You were such a huge part of our lives for so long. 😦

  2. I know the feeling, but trust me, Grand Canyon age kids are so much fun too!!!

    • When I need a reminder that the next stage can be fun I look to your family as one of my examples. 🙂 Thanks for making it look enjoyable!


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