Thursday, July 26, 2012
Perhaps three hours of pushing, getting punched in the stomach by a nurse and doing the unconceivable in front of my husband took all of the stamina that one needs for falling in love out of me? Perhaps my face was too unbelievably swollen to see my newborn son clearly enough to fall in "that kind" of love with him? Perhaps I'm just not that kind of maternal goddess? Whatever the reason, the truth of the matter was that at five minutes old, I loved my son, but I was not absurdly in love with him.
To my relief, that moment did come about three months later when my high-strung, high-maintenance newborn began showing off his flirtatious personality and ever since, every day, I've fallen more and more in that obnoxious kind of love that only a parent knows for their child (yes, it's true) and these days, I'm pretty sure he feels it too.
I'd be lying if I didn't also admit that early on in my pregnancy I had secretly hoped for a girl. Mainly, because I longed to one day have the kind of relationship with a daughter that I have with my mother. The kind of relationship that goes from being 16 and feeling something just shy of hatred for the woman who buys your clothes, cooks your meals and drives you to the mall because she just doesn't understand the complicated, angsty "woman" you are to being 25 and enjoying nothing more than gabbing over a large glass of wine with the woman who understands more than anyone the woman you've become. So when the doctor unceremoniously announced, "we have a baby boy" I wondered what I would do with trucks, trains and a lifetime with the less affectionate gender.
Well, I quickly figured out what to do with trucks and trains and boy (oh boy) was I wrong about boys being less affectionate. Now, at one year old, I can barely break free from the clutches of my affectionate little momma's boy. Every day at about 6pm, we sit on the floor and play while we wait for Daddy to get home. And every day at about 6pm, while we sit on the floor and play, P will wrap his freakishly strong little arms around my neck and slobber baby kisses all over my face, often trying to shove his baby tongue in my mouth. We'll be sure to work on that because while affection is a wonderful thing, an Oedipus Complex is not. But for now he can slobber, hug and kiss as much as he wants. This has become my favorite part of the day. Let's put it this way, I enjoy it so much that I even put down my wine glass.
I also now realize that regardless of gender or whether it takes 1 second or 3 months to fall head-over-heels in love with your baby, if you develop a friendship with your kids, they will enjoy that glass of wine with you forever. Even with the army of boys I'm convinced I will have (happily might I add), I think my chances are pretty good because I come from a long line of mothers whose children enjoy their company. Or maybe I come from a long line of mothers whose children enjoy wine. Either way, I look forward to the day my momma's boy spreads his wings and runs off on his own without desperately clinging to my "apron strings" and I'm hopeful that he will turn around and see not only his impossibly young-looking and stylishly dressed mother, but he will also see his friend.