I want my baby back

by me

As I sit there holding you in my arms, this long legged long armed 3 and a half year old, I look at you, and I don’t know who you are. I’m singing you the songs I sung the baby in my belly. And you are supposed to be the baby that was in my belly. But you are not a baby. You are mobile and opinionated and loud and energetic. You are non-stop motion and sound. And you are overwhelming. And you are not my baby anymore. You’re a full person. And all I can do is sit there and cry, and be glad it’s dark so you can’t see, and miss the baby I once had. The baby I didn’t, I couldn’t appreciate because I was so severely depressed. Back then I looked at you in my arms, and I felt nothing. And if I did feel something, it was pulverizing anxiety. I couldn’t wait to get you off of me. And now, I can’t get you to sit still on me. You’re off in the world exploring and testing out your independence. As you should be. It’s “developmentally appropriate” my therapist would say. I’m supposed to be excited about who you are, watching you experience the world around you more and more intelligently every single day. But instead of being in the present moment – I’m too tired to be in any present moment – all I want is my baby back. I want that teeny, tiny, wobbly, uncoordinated, non-verbal lump of warmth and cuddleness. But she’s gone. She’s GONE. I can’t go back. I can’t go back!! And I can’t resolve that period of time where I was unable to be present, unable to enjoy. And it’s tearing me apart. And it’s taking away from my now. Leaving me with the knowledge that not being here now means: wanting to come back to this moment some time in the future and regretting I couldn’t be in the moment, again. How do I climb out from under this heavy load of sadness. How do I release you, my poor, sad self from 3 and a half years ago. How do I forgive you for not being the mom you wanted to be. How do I forgive me for not being the mom I want to be now.