It’s dark here. Dylan is curled up against my back. Elliot snuggled in the crook of my arm. Both asleep.
I want to write more about these experiences. Of having children and seeing them grow. Of seeing them learn and form words, sentences. Of how they can blow your mind by saying one word only and how ferociously you want to protect them from feeling pain. Any kind of pain.
I want to write about the love. How intensely it holds you and how it dictates much of what you do in life.
And I want to tell you about how exhausting it is. How easily you lose your you-ness. How hard it is to have so little freedom, so little time to do anything for yourself.
I want to write about the puke on my back, the poo on my hand and the urine on my clothes. About how I usually only shower once every 3 days. I want to tell you how my 2.5 year old hogs my iPad all the time and sneezes all over it or finds his way to his favourite YouTube video with yogurt fingers.
I want to write about how I marvel over the shape of Dylan’s nose, the deep rich colour of his hazel eyes, the curve of his upper lip. I am awed at my own child’s beauty.
I want to tell you how I can’t get over how much Elliot smiles and laughs at his tender age of 4.5 months old, how his face lights me up each time he looks at me. How the fire inside his little soul excites me and gives me an inward smile.
I want to write about how often I’ve heard the song: “Old MacDonald had a Farm” and the countless versions of it that exist on YouTube. And about the fear. All the ‘what-ifs’ and how I have to force myself not to imagine the most dire possible scenarios involving my children and the man that I love.
I want to tell you how parenthood is the greatest spiritual lesson and a lesson in letting go and selflessness.
I want to write about how I miss going to the cinema twice every weekend. How, since Dylan was born I’ve only been 3 times in 3 years.
I want to write about how I miss working on paintings until deep in the night and how I miss not being able to wear my hair loose (as baby hands will pull at it).
I want to tell you about how I miss sitting still. Sitting quietly with nothing to do, ruminating over poetic ideas in life, now, most of what I ruminate about is practical stuff and the logistics on how to run our family life. (“Ruminate” does that come from Rumi? – We almost called Elliot, Rumi! :-)).
I want to tell you how I miss having Andy as the center of my universe and me being the center of his universe. And I want to tell you how there is nothing more amazing than watch Andy dance with Dylan to ‘raw hide’ (Dylan’s favourite song).
I want to tell you about how kind Dylan is and how all he wants is to be seen and loved. And about how loving he is towards his little brother even though sometimes he finds it hard to accept he has to share the attention with him.
I want to tell you about Dylan’s hair, how it’s much blonder than mine and Andy’s hair and how it has a golden glow in the sunshine. It’s also growing dreads seeing that he won’t let me brush it …
I want to write about Elliot’s little mannerisms and noises. He makes noises like a little bird, a little little tiny bird. Or a little dinosaur, though I’m not sure what a little dinosaur sounds like.
I want to write about waking up every hour at night and how sleep deprivation causes intolerance to rise its ugly head and how watching Elliot breastfeed is one of the most beautiful sights I’ve ever seen.
I want to tell you how I just cannot find the time to book myself a pedicure; my feet look like those of a troll’s.
I want to tell you about how beautiful it is, how difficult it is, how stinky it is, how amazing it is, how rewarding it is, how frustrating it is, how funny it is, how messy it is, how depressing it is, how uplifting it is. How sometimes I despair, how sometimes I rejoice, how sometimes I cry, how sometimes I laugh big belly laughs.
I want to write about the dichotomy. Of how having children is both the most amazing thing and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. And how on some days I wish it all away: undo it all and go back to how my life used to be. ‘I unsubscribe’ I sometimes say jokingly. And how on other days, I thank every God & Goddess in the universe for the precious precious gifts bestowed upon me through the gift of my children.
I want to tell you that parenting is bitch-slapping my ass. It is the toughest thing I’ve ever ever done, and it’s relentless and deeply life-altering. And then there are boys who sing ‘twinkle twinkle little star’ for you and babies who laugh at the sound of tearing paper.
It’s sitting in the fire, once more. <3