Sometimes I’m literally blown away when looking at my daughter. She’s changed so much in just these two short months. Some of my favorite things have already come and gone. I miss them (especially the forehead wrinkles I affectionately referred to as “the turtle face”), but they have been replaced by other exciting and endearing things–like smiling. Smiling is pretty much the best thing ever. She’s learning and growing so much. She’s getting so big and strong, and she’s starting to look just a little bit like me. When she’s laying on the floor with lots of wiggles, I think about how she used to wiggle inside of my belly, and I miss that just a teensy tiny bit.
There’s been a steep learning curve for sure. Babies are hard. There are opportunities to focus on failure and worry pretty much every hour of every day. Then there are other opportunities to give in to feelings of selfishness and resentment. Parenting isn’t always pretty. In fact, there are plenty of times when it’s down right ugly because my heart is ugly and sinful and parenting does a great job of unearthing my deepest sins. But it’s also beautiful. It’s beautiful to watch Husband learn to be a father. It’s beautiful to watch him love her. It’s beautiful to see how we love each other more and differently and yet the same now that she’s here. It’s beautiful to see my character refined as I make hard choices. It’s beautiful to learn about myself as a mother and homemaker in addition to a worker bee and wife. It’s beautiful to understand so much more about sacrificial love. It’s beautiful to see how our community has helped us with this transition. And my daughter is beautiful. And my family is beautiful. When it’s hard and when I’m exhausted and empty in a way I have never felt before, I have the choice to give into my feelings of selfishness or draw on my only real and sustaining source of joy and strength.