I've got reams of ''draft'' posts that I've never published. Many are unfinished, some seemed irrelevant by the time I wrote the last sentence, and others just seemed either too gloomy, too glib, too trite or just too personal. There are a few that just weren't timed right. This is one of those.
I wrote this way back in September 2015, very shortly after my youngest niece and Goddaughter had given birth to twins. Immediately after I'd written it, I realised maybe I shouldn't say ''all the things I really don't need to say'' quite so early on in the game.
I thought it might be best if she figured most of it out on her own.
But this morning, a little over six months later, now that her ''new normal'' has transitioned into her normal, I'm hoping there's a thing or two she might relate to ...
You had two! Slap me silly ... you seriously had twins.
You're still a kid. You're still my niece, my kiddo, my goddaughter. You're still really, really little. In my head.
But you're a mom. How the hell did that happen? Seriously?
When did you become a woman? A grown woman. An incredible woman. An invincible woman. A frail woman. A strong woman. A sensitive woman. An incredible woman. A MOM...
A MOM ...
And so there's really nothing left to say... because from here on in ... you've got it all down pat.
It doesn't matter that this is your first go around; you'll figure it out. There's nothing I can tell you that you don't instinctively know. And if you don't know it, you're going to feel your way around until you get it right.
That's what moms do ... feel things out.
From here on in, you'll be like ''Hey, Kiddo, you don't like this boob? I'll give you the other one ... Don't like that one? We'll try the first one again ... Don't like it? Well, I'm out of boobs, let's try a bottle. Don't like a bottle? Let's try a soother. Nope? Let's go for a ride ... whatever ... we'll figure it out together. Jiggle, jiggle, on my hip. I think I may cave and have a glass of wine if you don't take the boob soon ... really, not really, perhaps, NOT! I'm dreaming of sleeping for just 30 minutes straight. But you need me right now ... sleep will come later. It's just you and me for now, Kiddo.''
People will try to tell you how to get it right. Veteran moms will try to steer you in the right direction. The childless will quote rearing techniques gleaned off of Wikipedia. Everyone will have an opinion. We mean well. Our problem is we don't really have anything better to offer. None of our opinions are worth squat. Including my babbledygook. We're just sharing because we know it will fill the time while you figure it all out on your own.
You're a MOM. You're exhausted. You're exhilarated. You're depressed. You're ecstatic. You're beautiful. You're horrendous. You're giving. You have nothing left to give. You're happy. You're sad. You're everything and nothing all at once. You're something you've never been before. You're something no one could ever put into words. There's no time at all left for you, and yet you're EVERYTHING and EVERY MOMENT to someone.
NOTHING prepares you for this. This is the blockbuster everyone's told you about but you'd never gotten around to watching. You'd never experienced it first-hand.
But now you're IN it. Now it's truly yours, isn't it? This is your moment ...
In this moment, you may love. You may grieve. You may dance. You may crumble to the floor in tears. You may feel helpless, alone. You may feel invincible. You may want to be surrounded by friends. You may want to be alone with your new little family. But one thing is for sure ... you will FEEL this moment. Through the exhaustion that permeates your day, you will KNOW you are a MOM. Everything is different. Nothing is the same.
And I could tell you so many things, my Goddaughter. I could dishearten you with my tales of sleepless nights, I could inspire you with tales of gummy smiles, and first teeth, and first steps. I could make you cry if I told you about the time I looked down at my child knowing it would be the last time I nursed. One day, maybe, I could make you laugh out loud if I told you about the days I dressed up in stilettos and fancy clothes only to find myself covered in poo and vomit minutes later.
But these tales mean nothing for you today. These are moments of MY history that are waiting for YOU out there. They may look the same, they may look slightly different. But at the end of your tale, you'll have horrid stories, happy stories, sad stories, funny stories. And you'll love each one as much as the other. But they're not stories for you yet ... they're your EVERY DAY today ...
Hold on to these crappy-happy-sappy-horrid moments ... one day you'll be glad you did.
For today, my Goddaughter, I have nothing more to say. Other than ''trust your instinct''. You are a MOM. You are an incredible, amazing, resilient, powerful MOM. You're weak, too. And that's really ok. All moms are. We're all made of the same cloth. We're strong ... but we fray. All of us. We pretend we're perfect ... but we're not.
But we try.
You can do this.
I love you.
High as the sky and even higher.
P.S. It gets easier. Jiggle, jiggle, on my hip. Hand me that glass of wine, would you?