12 months of bina
yesterday bina turned one year old. its so crazy thinking back to those first weeks of her life when every day felt like a year and i was distraught thinking it was going to be like that forever. so much has happened in the last 12 months. so very much.
when i had bina, i was able to take 12 weeks of maternity leave. i dealt with post partum anxiety weeks 2-6. that was the worst month of my life. i thought i would never get myself back and i was no where near the mom i thought i would be. but i did get back on track with medicine and the help and support of friends and family. by the end of my maternity leave, i didn't want to return to work. but i had to. and thankfully i had extremely supportive and flexible supervisors who helped with my transition to working mom tremendously. i returned to work at the beginning of september. we decided (after flip flopping multiple times) that a daycare center wasn't for us, and we thankfully had a friend who was able and willing to watch bina for us.
it was in december that we started kicking around the idea to move back to michigan and then solidified the decision. then it felt like we were living in this weird limbo stage for the next five months: waiting to move, but not yet moving. we were going to start a new small group at church but then because we were leaving, it didn't make sense any more. we loved our church and that it was full of young families. but during that time we didn't strike up many new relationships just because we knew we weren't going to be there long. so we treasured the time we had with the friends we had made, and waited for the day when we would be leaving. it was a weird time.
buying our home in michigan and selling our house in austin were probably the most stressful things we've done outside of having bina. that was hard. hard. hard. hard. then packing up and preparing to move. i worked until the day before the movers came to load up our house. and the day after that we left for michigan. there wasn't really time to think or process, and if i tried i just ended up a puddle of tears. we just had to go through the motions and get the thing done! it was happening!
the first month here in michigan has been full of renovations, painting, unpacking, and making our house a home. even though i've technically been a stay at home mom all this time, i don't feel like it. we've been working so hard to get everything settled. i'm looking forward to having just one normal week! and then when i start thinking about what my "normal week" will look like, i get quite overwhelmed. ironic, huh?
yesterday i got all emotional after taking bina's last monthly photo. 12 months! we made it! i find myself longing for her to walk so we can go do fun things like play at parks. i'm now wishing away her babyhood. i remember crying in the hospital when she was born because i didn't want her to get bigger. ha. and now here i am wanting her to get bigger faster! i wrestle with enjoying the present season. god, help me to be content. this is what i do. look to the future and want it to get here faster, and then when it does i look back and say - oh but it was so good then. i don't want to wish away bina's babyhood. it will be over soon enough. i want to stop and just enjoy her little squishy body and her fast crawling. the way she lies on her side and nurses while kicking her legs. how she holds my neck tight when i'm holding her. that little baby butt of hers that i like to poke in the bath as she erupts into high pitched squeals and laughter. oh bina bina.
12 months. at two weeks, i thought she was going to be two weeks forever. and it has already been 52 weeks. gosh does time seem to go so slowly when we're in the thick of it. but then we look back and it was just a flash.
as i was feeding her lunch today after a playdate at a park with the local MOPS group, i got all choked up. i've been feeling discontent with my new role. it's new! it's uncomfortable! i don't know what i'm doing half the time! but isn't that how i felt about all of my new jobs? i changed jobs every year for six years, and then my last position i held for just under two years. in my second to last position, it took me six months before i felt like i knew what i was doing. and still i would have questions. in my last job, it took a year to get the full cycle of tasks. and my second year was trying to remember what i had done the first year and how i wanted to improve. gosh i just need some grace for myself. this is my first go at being a stay at home mom. i've been at it for a month, and have been doing some of the most stressful things we'll ever do for the last six months (buying and selling houses, moving across the country, renovations, new jobs). it's going to take time to get used to my new job. and with this job, the little one i'm overseeing is CONSTANTLY changing. so right when i think i've got it figured out. NOPE. EVERYTHING IS NEW AGAIN. ha. oh mamas. we have to have grace for ourselves. and our littles. and our hubbies. i need to hear this more than anyone.
not every day is going to be fun. but as a close friend of mine from high school reminded me when she was telling me about her recent transition to stay at home mom - this is the most important job i have. training up a tiny human. when i got choked up feeding bina lunch today, it was because i was thinking about how much i want to do this job well. more than any other job i've done so far. and so i'm praying for a new mommy tribe here in michigan. because i cannot do this alone. the days are long and hard and the work is all consuming. but the littles are worth it. it's all worth it. i'm praying for grace and patience for myself and for bina. i'm praying for creativity, that i would come up with ways for our days to be fun and somehow educational too. it's kind of a blast exploring this world with a tiny human for whom everything is new and exciting. and i get the privilege of sharing that experience with her. and i'm praying that with god i would be able to fight off my anxious thoughts about the present and future and focus on his truth. he's got us. and no matter what lies ahead, we are in his hands.
so here's to 12 months of bina. oh how i love that little babe. she was totally hamming it up last night when we had my dad and step mom, brother and sister in law over for dinner. bina shares my dad's birthday, so i made a special dinner and cake for him and then on saturday we will have a little family party for bina.
bina adored all of the attention she received from everyone. she gave us her contagious baby laughs and big open mouth smiles. sigh. again, oh how i love that little babe. i will enjoy the present (god help me!), and boy do i look forward to seeing her personality come out more and more as she continues to grow and develop. so much love.