It’s been more than a year since I’ve had my baby and I’ve shed the baby pounds, largely due to nursing. Yet, I’m resigned to the fact that unless I embark on a major diet change and workout routine, I just won’t have the same body ever again. I’ve got striations on my stomach, around my hips, and the dreaded muffin top, and I’m doubtful as to whether even weight loss and toning would get rid of the stretchy skin.
I still vividly remember the emotional wreck I was in the weeks after my daughter’s birth. Months later, I still wasn’t quite my usual self. I remember the plague of doubts, the crying fits, the sleepless nights. I can remember it all, and I can’t believe that that same person is me as I type this. Was I that woman, whose confidence that she would be a good mom crumpled as she carried her infant in the wee hours of the night, while her C-section scar healed? Was I that same woman who felt alone and insecure? That woman spent endless hours reading baby books, baby articles online to clue herself in on how to raise a happy, successful, healthy child.
As the months passed, I found myself relying less and less on experts on print, as well as on my mother, and relying more on what works for our family. Baby sites that used to be daily visits for me, became pit stops for articles I myself was writing, instead of as reference on what I should do with my own baby. The endless obsession with baby gear including strollers, car seats, stylish diaper bags, baby carrier, has ebbed to an all-time low post-pregnancy. With good reason: my daughter has become more mobile and less demanding in terms of diapers and outfit changes.
As my daughter has grown, so too has my confidence been regained. I see her smiles, her growth, her bubbly personality, as proof that, thankfully, we as her parents are doing a good job. As her personality has emerged faster than you can say “diva”, so too are we putting aside many things around the house that made her a true “baby”. The tiny diapers, the baby food, the baby tub, even the diaper bag.
We’re slowly entering an age where we communicate more, where independence is creeping in slowly but surely. I would love to freeze time so she can remain the baby we adore, but toddlerhood is just around the very close corner. At 13 months, she’s beginning to learn the power of the word “no”, and starting to insist on picking her own shoes! In short, It’s been a year of growth for her and her parents. She sheds her babyness, while I shed my past insecurities. She embraces independence as I embrace the challenge of parenting a toddler, with less strict adherence to what experts recommend, and more of a trust on my own instincts. We’ll navigate the year ahead with glee, my daughter, my husband and I. By the end of the year, as surely as she will learn so much from the world around her, so too will we learn from watching her take in the world.