Six weeks! You've been here six weeks. From the day you were born I was told to just wait for six weeks. Things start to click at six weeks. In those early days when I was recovering from surgery and your dad was gone and the days and nights felt endless, I couldn't imagine six weeks. But we're here. And those people who encouraged me... they were so right.
Six weeks feels pretty amazing. We've become a little team, you and me. Especially now that dad is back to work and the days belong to just us. I was worried about the transition but so far (five full days in) it's been working well. When it's only me and you in the house, I've found it easier to focus just on work while you're sleeping and easier to focus just on you while you're awake (except those minutes when you are content to sit in your chair in my office). And I quickly learned that field trips are necessary. I see lots of Target wandering in our future. And as soon as you're big enough for your stroller, we'll be taking many, many walks.
We took a big field trip this past weekend and flew up to Northern California to see family and attend a wedding. You were a champ on the plane rides and the four days we were away from home. I was thrilled with how well you traveled and happy I got through the whole weekend tear free. That's how I really know we turned a corner - there are way less tears from me.
One night while we were away, your dad and I went out for dinner and left you with both sets of grandparents. It was good for dad and I to get out, but I think it was even more exciting for the grandparents to get some extra time with you. I am not sure there have ever been four people more happy to have a baby in their lives again. When we got you back at the end of the evening, Dad said we should be sure to do something to thank them all for watching you. I looked at him sideways and told him I was pretty sure they'd be sending us thank you cards for letting you stay with them. How blessed we all are, sweet girl, to have them in our lives.
In the past few days, you've really started smiling. Genuine, predictable smiles that give us the feeling that you recognize and - gasp - like us! My technique is to get close to your face and say "hiiiiiiii Ellerie! It's Mama!" over and over in a high pitched voice while grinning like a maniac. When I am lucky, you break out into a huge grin - most likely just to quiet me down. Your dad brings you close to his face, kisses your nose and then pulls you away. You love it and you look at him like he hung the moon as your smile stretches up to your eyebrows. Those moments, watching the two of you, are my favorite, Ellerie. Of all the moments, I pick those.
Yes, yes. Things are magic at six weeks. We've got a grove. We've got nothing that looks like a schedule, but everything that looks like the promise of one. I want to remember this feeling. I wish I could save it up and share it with you in the future. If you ever decide to have a little one of your own, I'd love to pass you this energy in those early weeks when you're giving me That Look. That Look that says, "oh Mom, what have I gotten myself into?" I know I will not fully remember what you're going through but I promise to help as much as I can and share the same message with you... "Hang in there. Everything starts to make sense again at six weeks." Because it does. It really does.
I love you, Ellerie girl.
Yours forever, Mama.
I've gotten a few comments that these letters are way too personal. I respect that opinion. But here's the thing... they are personal for me. They are about me becoming a mother way more than they are about Ellerie. Ellerie will be writing her own story someday and sharing it if she chooses to. I have decided to publish the letters here because I do my best thinking and writing in this space. I also very much enjoy making the connection with other mothers who take the time to comment with advice or just acknowledge that they dealt with similar things. The letters will continue to be written - sometimes on a weekly basis, sometimes monthly depending on how much I have to say - until it makes sense for my family to no longer share. If they are not your thing, and again, I totally respect that, I recommend not reading them.
Comments are closed today because I am not looking for any extra positive or negative feedback. And I assure you this is the last footnote where I'll waste my or your time clarifying and justifying what I choose to write about. As I am sure you've noticed, it gets super boring.