Sometimes I feel like this blog is an outlet for my annoyances about motherhood. All the complaining about post-baby hair loss and terrible memory (mine), and the constant pooping (his) must make me sound an ungrateful wench. Which, let’s face it, sometimes I am. But sometimes I sit back and reflect on how I feel like I’m the luckiest person in the world.
Case in point: Evan recently learned how to wave. For the last few days, we’ve been sitting there and waving our arms frantically, saying “hi!” and “bye bye!” in those ridiculously chirpy tones that new parents innately use. Recently, during this embarrassing charade, he lifted up his arm and flopped it up and down a couple of times. I think he realized immediately that he was on to something, because we erupted into cheers and applause as if he had just won the Nobel Peace Prize, found a cure for cancer or even just emptied his own Diaper Champ. He broke into a huge grin and began flapping that arm up and down some more. Now, after a little practice, it takes only one or two loud “bye-byes” and a couple of small waves on our part to get him going.
I have no idea if a baby’s first wave is that much of an emotional event for other parents, but I was dumbfounded. It struck me that I am raising a real live human being here. He’s no longer a little blob. He is an ACTUAL PERSON who is learning how to COMMUNICATE. This parenting thing is really amazing, but is an unbelievable responsibility. I felt pure joy when I saw that wave. But afterward, it mixed with a little bit of fear, because now I have to be a good example. He is watching what I do and mirroring it. Now I don’t just have to take care of his basic physical needs. I also have to do my best not to screw him up! It really is an awesome responsibility.
But it is a responsibility that comes with so many rewards. People tell you about this before you have kids, but it’s hard to really get it. I know that I really truly did not understand. I honestly never thought seeing a little hand bobbing up and down would make my eyes well up with tears. It did, and for the first time made me feel like a real parent.
Although this real parent thinks it would rock if he could empty the Diaper Champ just once.