This past year has been one of firsts and lasts. My first vaginal delivery (and my last). My baby’s first rolls over, her first sit-ups, her first crawls, and her first pulling up to stand. Her firsts are also my lasts. She is the last infant that I will have as a mother. My last newborn sleepless nights, nursing all the time, pumping all the time, bottles all the time, baby. I realize that for many, they choose to have one baby who is both first and last, but for me: she is my third and final.
After baby number two, I didn’t feel done. My husband thought that a third would be nice, but financially it wasn’t such a great plan. But then – surprise! Who really needs to go to college anyway, right?! And now I feel DONE. I feel complete.
The firsts (and lasts) are bittersweet, but overall I’m so excited to see what this new little toddler adds to the mix. My last baby is a lovely, smart, go with the flow, opinionated child. I think she adds a nice balance to our family. Big 9-year-old sister is a huge help and a great friend to her, while big 6-year-old brother is enamored of her and wants to overwhelm her with snuggles (somewhat aggressively).
Being “done” being pregnant and giving birth feels great. I’ve been pregnant a total of five times and nursed for a sum total of 36 months. I’ve experienced life on the inside six times and have birthed three little people on the earth to hopefully outlive me, and contribute to making it a better place. Now the focus is on raising them to be stewards of the earth and caretakers of others. To teach them compassion, dignity, grace under fire, and a sense of humor when it all seems too much to manage.
Looking at my last baby’s sweet little face, I wonder what she will become and how her personality will develop as she leaves babyhood and gains a little independence. No doubt she will be just as willful as the rest of us. In the meantime, I’ll savor her babyness a little bit longer because I know eventually, I’ll miss those middle of the night snuggles and silly giggles.
So happy first birthday to my last baby! You were everything I dreamed of (and more).
How did you know when you were really DONE?