Notes to my new mommy self: Chill and enjoy
Exactly 20 years ago today (down to the moment, depending on when you read the paper), I brought home the best early Christmas present I ever will receive: my baby boy.
Yep, it was cold and snowy on Dec. 8, 1999. I remember clearly because the chilled air had me wrapping that infant tighter than Ebenezer Scrooge clutches a dollar bill, know what I’m sayin’?
Soon, he and I were wheeled out into parking lot of the hospital, where on Dec. 6 (2 1/2 weeks early!), Kyle Kimerer made his big entrance on the third rock … and his mother nearly made her exit.
Yeah, I almost bought the farm shortly after delivering my little angel, but that’s OK since that’s the day my life really started anyway.
So Daddy drove us slowly, carefully home, and upon arrival, that little guy and I made our way out of the car — and into the world — together.
I honestly do not recall my pre-Kyle existence. I can tell you one thing, it wasn’t nearly as fabulous — though I was unconvinced in those first few moments. OK, days. Fine, weeks.
As mentioned, I almost checked out post-delivery. Ergo, I wasn’t feeling 100 percent. Or 90. Or even 60, if I’m being honest, yo.
That, coupled with the fact that our little bundle was suffering from severe reflux disorder made that first year a bit, um, how would I describe it … terrifying? Yeah, that about sums it up.
If only I could go back in time and calm down long enough to ENJOY new motherhood, well, I might not be completely gray without a monthly visit from Ms. Clairol today, capisce?
Either way, in honor of Kyle’s 20th birthday, I’m giving myself (and all new parents) the gift of a letter to my “New Mommy” self:
Congratulations, girl; you did it! You survived childbirth. OK, it wasn’t pretty, but you’re here. And more importantly, so is that perfect, amazing new little human you and your hubby made. Well done!
Look, it’s not always going to be smooth sailing. He’s going to cry. He’s going to puke. He’s going to scream for 4 1/2 solid hours at least once. Seriously.
He will fall down. He will get hurt. He’ll needs casts and stitches, and he’ll spike fevers higher than the surface of Venus (yeah, it’s hotter than Mercury, I Googled it; you’ll understand Google later, son).
He’s going to tell you he hates you; he doesn’t. He’s going to tell you he doesn’t need you; he does.
Some kid will push him around and some girl will mess with his feels. You will get him through it — and stalk both of them until the time is right to retaliate. Just kidding! Well, mostly.
You’re going to make mistakes with him. He’ll be fine; so will you.
Everyone will give you advice, some kindly, some not so much. Listen to your doctor, your Mom and your own instincts because they’re spot on.
Breathe, girl. You’re keeping him warm, safe, educated, vaccinated and grounded in faith and hope. That, plus your deep, unconditional, never-question-it love is all he really needs.
And you can’t weaken that bond even if you tried.
In fact, every single day, you’ll arise thinking, “I could not love this child more.” Every day, you’ll prove yourself wrong.
Just be there for him. Hold his tiny hands as long as you can. They’ll be bigger than yours– and opening their own doors — before you know it.
Relax. Hang in there. You got this.
Kimerer is a proud Mom of the world’s most spectacular 20-year-old. Visit her blog at www.patriciakimerer.com.