Sometime about five months ago, I posted as a status update on facebook, "Chelsea Chapman is sitting by an open window, sewing and drinking a cup of hot tea. Is this really my life?" I typed those words with a contented sigh, reflecting on how grateful I was for such a sweet moment.
Almost instantly, my cozy little status update was bombarded with things like, "oh, you better enjoy that while it lasts" and "just wait till that baby comes" and "last one of those for a few years". In essence, many of my facebook friends (mostly moms) were implying that the birth of my baby girl would be the end of such quiet time and that I could look forward to another such moment in about 18 years.
And, yet... here I sit on my comfy couch, in my relatively clean living room looking at a beautiful bouquet of pink roses, reading a book and munching on some red bell pepper. This is a tender moment. This is a quiet moment. But the difference between that moment 5 months ago and this moment today is that, upstairs, a beautiful darling 4 month old baby girl is sleeping in her crib. For as long as she sleeps, I will enjoy my book and my roses and my bell pepper and, when she wakes up, the smile that she rewards me with will far outshine those things.
To all of my sweet friends who are about to have new babies... and there are several of you, praise God... Know that your life will absolutely be utterly changed. You may not be able to spend all afternoon wandering around the used book store, sitting at your sewing machine, watching your favorite shows or shopping at the mall but what you will spend your time doing will be far more valuable to you and the world that will be impacted as a result of the loving investments you make in your baby.
I just wanted to say these things and attempt, with these few words, to balance so much of what new mommies hear from old mommies. Your life, your sense of self, the things you love to do will not disappear from existence. They'll just change a bit. And that's ok. I'm no pro, that's for sure... and I only have 4 months and 1 week of experience, but those 4 months and 1 week have been some of the best days of my life. For you, I believe, the best is yet to come.
So, here's to tender moments, however and with whomever they arrive.