[In these photos: six! week! old! Whuffle! I can hardly remember when he was such a wee peanut. And yet… it seems like yesterday, all at the same time.]
As Paulo’s first birthday is barreling down upon us, Nuno and I are feeling a little emotional… in two very, very different ways. It’s amazing to me how we’re both parents to the same baby and having such very different reactions to his growing up.
For Nuno, it’s thrilling. He’s talked about how it’s really just “in the past month” [note: he’s been saying this each month for about four months] that he’s been able to really interact with Paulo and have some kind of basic communication with him. He’s super excited that our floppy nugget is becoming this whole person and is really looking forward to board games, trampolines, and adventures. He keeps asking “When’s he going to talk? When’s he going to walk? When can I buy him a soldering iron?” He truly can’t wait for this guy to become a full on big kid.
And for me… while I’m so excited to watch my mini-Whuff become a big Mr. Whuffle… it’s so bittersweet.
It seems like this is a common sentiment from mothers. We grew these babes, birthed them, fed them from our bodies… when they’re truly tiny, they’re truly a part of us. Even if we didn’t breastfeed, those hours holding the baby in the dark – they’re an extension of us. Not to say that this isn’t true of fathers, but they do lack the oxytocin rush when sniffing that fuzzy wee head. (Nuno at one point tried to tell me that no, the baby did not “smell good” and I told him that he needed to recalibrate his brain.)
And just as we long for them to sleep through the night and crawl and wean and talk… when they do… there’s a piece of that tiny baby gone. They’re further and further from that itty bitty nugget we rocked in our arms, grew in our bellies. And it’s such a bittersweet thing.
Maybe there are mamas out there who are glad to see the baby days go by and their children fully becoming children. I don’t know. I only know for me, it’s so wonderful and so wistful all at the same time watching this wee man becoming oh so not very wee.