One Month

Dear Andrew,

With all that we have going on in our family, I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep up a monthly letter to you for as long as I did with your brother. I’m going to take it one month at a time, though, and give it a try. Because I always want to remember these baby days, and if I don’t stop to get a few words down, they’ll slip by all too fast. From experience, I also know that even if I write something, they still will. Because there’s no way to save everything. And some things may actually be better left unsaved, too, like all the spit-up, dirty diapers or sleepless nights, for instance. I’m good with forgetting all that.

I am still so proud and grateful for the birth that we had. Your first action in this world was to give an amazing gift to your mommy– confidence and trust in my body and myself that went beyond what I had ever imagined before. You surprised me coming early, and you surprised me by being a boy. You’ve already taught me to let my expectations go, to sit back and just take you for who you are. To cherish these moments with you, and with our family.

You were born with your hand by your face, and you don’t seem happy without a hand or two brushing your cheek or chin almost constantly. As I choose photographs of you to share, the ones without the curled presence of your hand in view seem off somehow. You don’t like being swaddled, and if I dare move your hand away from its natural resting spot, you screw up your face and wind up for a scream. I usually put it back before you hit full volume. Usually.

You are growing before my very eyes. I’ve spent so much time resting on the couch these last few weeks, with you on my chest or across my lap. I find myself unable to keep from touching you, your soft cheek, that downy hair, those tiny, silky palms and fingers. I have studied you daily. Your face started off so closed, so small. And in mere days, you have become so alert, so strong, so loud in your grunts and expressions of dissatisfaction. Those hands are already so much bigger to me. Your weight pressing that much heavier against my torso. I have no worries about your weight gain or your growth curve. You are thriving. And I am already forgetting the extreme smallness of your earliest days.

You grunt and stretch and squirm like all newborn babies do. You make these faces in your sleep that has us all wondering what you’re dreaming. When you’re awake and quiet, you form your mouth in such a way that catches our breath because you look so much like you have something really important to share with us, if only you could just remember the words. You smile and even laugh in your sleep. The most amazing sound to come out of you, though, has to be the burps. I’ve never heard such frat party burps come from such a little vessel. You get so cranky when I forget to burp you, and sometimes those burps just come out on their own from a shift in position. Your dad and I are often surprised by your burps, and most certainly impressed.

You know what you want, what you need. And for now, most of it’s pretty much wrapped up in the mommy package. You mostly tolerate your big brother’s insistent kisses and cuddles. You were great settling in with your grandparents and auntie, but it’s taken you some time to actually warm up to your own daddy. You’re getting there, the two of you, and I’m so grateful for that, but it makes my heart so happy when all I need to do is speak softly in your ear as I lift you up, and like magic, the screaming stops, your breathing calms and you just listen. Sometimes it’s just for a moment before you refocus on whatever the pressing need might be, but I know it’s because you have been feeling my love for so much longer than these four short weeks, and mine is the presence you know best. You are a lucky little boy, to have so much love, and I am super crazy lucky to be first among all those people you have in your life to supply it.

Love,
Mommy

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