Friday, October 05, 2012

On Three Years

The day Bri was born, I was both nervous and not nervous. All those years of babysitting and watching my sisters having children were finally going to come in handy, it seemed.

The epidural took beautifully, labor was quick, and just a few pushes later, Bri was suddenly on my chest.

The first thing I thought was that she looked just like Collin and that I couldn’t believe I’d had such a tiny baby. I was a nine-pound monster when I was born 25 years prior, and I thought for sure I’d be giving birth to no smaller than an eight-pound baby, but there she was...just over seven pounds with a smooshed head. I looked worriedly at the nurse and asked if her head was supposed to look that way.

That was the first peek at my mom-self; unsure and worried and painfully tender-hearted.

I was assured her head would round out, and then the crying started. Oh, that tiny girl had a temper on her. Any time she wasn’t nursing, she was crying. She balled her little fists up by her head, squeezed her then-dark eyes shut, and just screamed.

Every nurse that came in during our hospital stay commented on that temper. I remember thinking that she was just a newborn and that she would outgrow it, and I laugh at myself because that temper has stayed. We have a willful girl on our hands.

Looking back on those first days in the hospital and the first weeks at home, I am in awe of how much of herself she already was in that tiny, helpless body. On the car ride home from the hospital, I noticed that she crossed her ankles while sitting in her car seat; something she still does three years and thirty pounds later.

Her dark hair fell and blonde curly hair has grown in its place. Dark blue eyes turned to light blue.

She is shy and sweet around the new, loud and funny around the familiar, and quick to anger when it’s just her and her Mommy. Collin sits back and laughs at the sameness of our personalities.

And I sit back and laugh as she constantly tattles on Collin, seeing him as more of a playmate than anything else, and I’m okay with that.

She is so much the baby I held in my arms three years ago and continues to grow into so much more each and every day. And I am just as unsure and worried and painfully tender-hearted as I was the minute we met.


Kirstin Bewley said...

Awe! I loved reading this Ashley! You're such a sweet mommy! -Kirstin

Anonymous said...

LOVE THIS!!! And what a sweet beautiful pic of you and Bri in the hospital!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing, is so very sweet.
Hope you don't mind me reading your are a wonderful writer and a very good Mother. Bri is proof of that...I love that girl!