The first few nights, and truthfully weeks, of your life are a blur to me. I remember leaving the hospital feeling both excitement and fear. I couldn’t wait to introduce you to your new home, but I doubted my ability to care for you.
To my surprise, we settled right in and I learned the sound of your cries.
Were you hungry?
I could tell just what you needed by the sound of your cries.
Cries that often came in the wee hours of the night when the rest of the world was sleeping. Cries that woke me from an already light sleep. Cries that summoned me back to your side to care for your needs.
Yes, I learned all about you, and you learned to trust me.
But those cries started fading as you grew. You learned to soothe yourself. You started sleeping for longer stretches of time. You learned that a simple whimper would do the job. And soon, those cries nearly disappeared altogether.
You want to know where I am, but you don’t want to be in my arms.
You need me to get you your food, but you don’t want me to feed you.
You want to snuggle when you are getting sleepy but want your space when you get comfortable.
Sometimes I wonder if you need me as much as you once did. Do you still love me as much? Will you outgrow me soon?
But once in a great while, I hear that cry. The cry that might as well be you calling my name. The cry that says, “Mommy, I still need you.”
That cry both breaks and warms my heart. I hate knowing you are upset, but I love knowing I get to fix it one more time.
I scoop you up in my arms and hold you close. Your sobs start to slow and your tears start to dry. Soon you are sleeping peacefully in my arms.
Sometimes, if I’m honest, I don’t put you down for a while. I just never know when it will actually be the last time I hear that cry.
Originally published on the author’s Facebook page