Wiping my tears off my newborn daughter’s sleeping head, I struggle… and am gently reminded why we do this.
Why we put ourselves through the pain, the vulnerability and the brokenness of birth.
Why we allow ourselves to be crushed and stretched beyond imaginable limits caring for these precious lives that take so much from us. Always giving. Always crying.
I never knew tears could flow so easily. I never knew love could hurt so much.
Every little life that joins our family changes us so much. Our ‘normal’ is no longer, and like blind leading the blind we have to grope our way back to a new ‘normal’… whatever that is.
The new baby needs and needs and takes and takes until it feels like there is nothing left to give.
The already-there babies cry and whine and whine and cry and try to understand that their lives will never be the same.
They try to understand that the routine they have grown so fond of has to change again to accommodate this new little person. This new life that interrupts and is so cute but so fragile… and she doesn’t even know how to play yet.
She doesn’t even know how to play!
And mommy’s arms are full so often and mommy’s lap is so crowded, but that baby is so cute and they love her so much.
She is so tiny. And so soft. So incredibly soft and fragile. And that smell. That sweet new baby smell that even big brothers can’t resist.
That sweet smell that keeps them coming back for more and more kisses and more and more touching of those soft fingers and oh so tiny toes.
But she won’t stay little for long. And these days that can be so hard sometimes… So hard we wonder how we ever did this before or how we could ever do this again… are gone before we know it.
Life returns to a new normal, at least until next time.
And we can’t imagine life without her. Without this person who has so taken hold of our hearts that the thought of her not being here literally takes our breath away.
This feeling. This all-consuming love. This family. This is why we do this.