Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Pull

I am nearing 38 weeks now. Samuel is big and beautiful and healthy, and I am so grateful for that. My body, however, is starting to show some stress. High BP, and I am now on day 4 of a headache that won't quit. We have visited the hospital twice this week, and it's only wednesday. I'm on bedrest until he makes his grand appearance. All in all, it's nothing I didn't expect.

The thing I am struggling with most right now is having to give up a big part of my relationship with Lily- the day to day mundane feeding, dressing, errands, etc. I can't do it, and havent been able to since Sunday, when my headache hit. I am lucky that Mark is here, and lucky to have friends to help me.

But. I miss my girl. Right now, she just doesn't want anything to do with me, and while my mind understands this- after all, mommy is just lying in bed- my heart is shattering everytime she refuses to be near me. She wants to color and play and run around and watch tv and read books. All the things that I was able to do with her and cant now. She wants daddy. And he has stepped up and been so wonderful. I am very lucky.

But it's my job to take care of her. It's my job to dress her and read to her and make her lunch. I was born to be home and care for her. It's what my soul longs for. The guilt I feel is astronomical. She is drawing away from me and toward her father, and I know that that's okay. It's been really good for them. But for me it's hard to watch.

I am already feeling the pull between my two babies. Samuel needs me to rest right now, so he stays safe and continues to grow well. I need to rest so my BP doesn't spike and cause me trouble. But my sweet little Lily is lost to me in the process.

I know that this is temporary, and soon enough I will be able to run and chase and take her to the park again. But for tonight, and for right now, the house is empty and I am allowing myself to cry and be sad. This is what I have always wanted- to be a mother. I've always wanted to have children, to nurture and create a home. And I know this bedrest is temporary. But with every time she calls out for daddy instead of me, everytime she refuses to get in bed and snuggle or come when I call her, it is like my heart breaks a little. I miss her, and she is right here.

This is the thing that I never knew about motherhood- that I would NEED my child as deeply as she needs me- perhaps more. She is my world and my life and my best friend. She is my everything. When I hold her, when I smell her sweet head or rock her or read to her, I am absolutely complete. I am exactly who I have always fought to be. She is my medicine, she heals me and makes me whole.

And right now, she is not mine. I can't do for her. And as I watch her relationship with her daddy blossom like a flower, I can't help but feel sadness mixed with joy.

I think of all the times I have been upset with her, irritated. I think of the times I have pulled her off of my lap and sent her on her way, or was too busy to rock, too busy to read. What was more important? Housework? My own projects? A phone call?

I wish I had those moments back.

For now, I need to be as content as I can to hold my Samuel in my body, to give him more time to grow. I need to know that I am being a good mother by resting and keeping him safe, even if it means I can't care for Lily as I usually do. Even if it means that for now, she turns away from me, when she has always run to me.

And when I can do everything for her again, I won't forget these times. I won't forget these tears. I won't forget this broken heart or how I miss her voice and her scent and her need. I will remember just how much I need her too, and how the days may be long but the years are short. Soon she will not need me at all. But while she does, I will be here and treasure it.

Dearest Lily,

I love you, even if right now I cannot be the mama you deserve. I know you don't understand. But soon it will be you and me again, just like always. And I will make this up to you. You are my best thing, my one true thing. I can't wait to be yours again.