The first time your little baby tries solids is such a momentous occasion. It is so exciting to see his reaction as he tastes something other than the milk he has been drinking for months. The faces he makes are certainly photograph-worthy. It opens doors to a whole other world our son will enjoy exploring for years to come.
He was breathing. And so was I.
Later that day when recalling the events that had occurred, I broke down and wept. I wept with a sense of vulnerability I could not understand.
Child birth had left its mark on me. Physically, I may have healed. Slowly I am a beginning to see a familiar woman looking back at me in the mirror. Mentally, I have wholeheartedly accepted my new found responsibilities as a mother, and am beginning to wrap my head around how to manage it all. But, emotionally, I am left with an open wound; a wound so deep and raw that even the faintest touch leaves me silently screaming in heart-wrenching pain.
In mere seconds, this baby came into our lives. And, forever, I am changed. Every news report about a missing child is no longer just about a child. It is now about a child just like mine. It brings a lump to my throat and wells up my eyes because I can’t help but think what if that was my baby. I can’t help but say a silent prayer for that poor mother who is going through the unthinkable.
Becoming a mother has opened my eyes and my heart to a world that I never knew existed. I experience joy like never before when I see him play, laugh, and learn. I experience love like never before when he falls asleep in my arms. And, unfortunately, part and parcel of being a mother, I experience fear, worry, and pain like never before. Even if it is just for seven seconds, it lasts for far too long.