STARTING OVER

When I became pregnant with our 3rd child, I was often met with a question regarding starting over.  Our kids were turning 8 and 6 and people couldn’t understand why we would start all over.  They would bluntly ask the question and follow up with “was this planned or an accident?”  Sometimes they didn’t even ask and just assumed the baby I was carrying was unplanned or would be a burden on our somewhat independent lives.

As much as I tried to push the comments aside, they slightly resonated with me.

We were starting over.

Starting over

Our kids had been sleeping through the night for years, they could go to the bathroom on their own, we didn’t schedule anything around nap time and going out of town required minimal planning.  We had been experiencing independence in our household and it was fantastic.  However, something was missing, our family wasn’t complete.  So after 2 more years of infertility and a miscarriage, our family started over. Little Vivian joined our world in September.

In those first few weeks as I held my new daughter I realized that every time someone made that comment about starting over it was made with a negative connotation.  Yes, we were starting over with sleepless nights, dirty diapers, around the clock nursing and days dictated by naps.  However, what they failed to consider is that when we started over, we got another chance to embrace the gift of time.

Our first two are exactly 2 years apart and honestly there are times when I look back at pictures and don’t remember those moments.  I do remember wishing they would grow up, learn to walk, talk, be independent and then I blinked…and they did.  They grew up before my eyes and I missed embracing the moments I cherish most.

kids

Starting over has allowed me to the opportunity to slow down.

I cherish the late night feedings, studying her every feature in the dimly lit room.

I sit on the floor watching her play, not wishing she would roll or crawl, but just enjoying the moment.

I listen to every squeal, giggle and babble, trying to record the sound in my head, knowing that one day I won’t hear it anymore.

I hold her a bit tighter because I have seen how quickly they grow up.

You see, starting over has been the biggest blessing and has taught me so much. While I have been given another chance to treasure all the moments I may have missed or overlooked with my older two, I have also been stopped in my tracks and reminded how I need to embrace each moment of their lives as well.  The sweet babies that made me a mom are turning 8 and 6, they are independent and need me less and less for their day to day tasks. Starting over reminded me that I need to invest and cherish their everyday moments as much as I cherish the beginning days. I have slowed down, hugged a little tighter and talked with them a little longer.  I am so thankful for the opportunity to “Start Over”.

The greatest thing about starting over is the fact that you don’t need a new baby to do it. You can start over today, take a deep breath and embrace the joy of this moment.

, , , ,

2 Responses to STARTING OVER

  1. Katherine L Williams March 25, 2016 at 6:41 am #

    That’s so funny to me, the idea that you’re “starting over” while your other kids are still in grade school. In 1995 I was 20 years old, and pregnant with what would end up being my only child. There were two women/couples in my birthing class. Both were around 40 years old. One couple had a 19 year old kid already, and the other had a 16 year old and a 20 year old. The were both pregnant… with twins!

    THAT’S starting over. When your kids are literally coming to the age of planning their life outside of your home, and you’re about to bring to that home, a pair of newborn infants. At the time, I thought that was nuts. That’s literally looking down the barrel of freedom and walking back into the work and frustration that can accompany parenting. On some level I do still think it’s an extreme action; especially since I’ve been taking care of kids – mine or someone else’s – basically since I was 13.

    But now being 40 years old myself, and having been a single mother who raised one son on her own, and never had a partner or the financial resources needed to have any more kids back when I was young, it doesn’t sound quite so extreme anymore. I’m a very different person than I was at 20, and I’d be a very different kind of parent. And it also doesn’t hurt that 20 years ago, having babies into your 40’s was a less common thing – now we’ve got women having their first families in their 50s.

    If you think about it, the average person has 2.5 careers in their life now, because not only is life expectancy stretching, but the age at which people can still be vital and active keeps getting later too. What kind of lifestyle, home, geography people want to live in, can change so much in 80-100 years. So the idea of having kids in further apart groupings – almost one family having multiple generations of kids – makes perfect sense.

  2. Emily March 25, 2016 at 8:02 am #

    I so agree Heather! Even though our 3rd came 3 years after our 2nd, I REALLY have taken time to slow down and remember it all! For me it was more about it being the “last time” for all these “firsts”. But that also helped me put into perspective my little boys and all the “last times” I am experiencing with them!

    It is a true miracle that we get to be moms and experience all these firsts and lasts with our kids. Remembering to slow down and enjoy them is a wonderful message. <3

Leave a Reply