My baby’s life but gone, forgotten,
Sunday, 20 July 2014: One Year, One Hundred and Eleven Days Old.
As I go to bed tonight I feel so amazingly blessed to have such a beautiful, friendly, smart, gracious little girl for a daughter, and a kind, loving, honest and strong man for a husband.
I’m not quite sure what it is that’s making me feel the love but I had to drag myself away from Ayla’s bedside after I snuck in for her nightly kiss and “sweet dreams” wish, and now I feel heart is going to burst.
It’s intereseting because feeling “blessed” is something that’s attainable by all of us but I feel so very privledged to be aware enough to see it.
The past month or so has been quite tumultous, worry and stress and uncertainty has hung over us like a fading shadow, and even though logically we know everything will turn out just fine and that everyone will be alright, it’s been hard to let myself really feel it.
I think tonight I’ve just had a renewed sense that these really are some of the best days of our lives, and I’m determined to appreciate them while they’re here.
Hubby, Ayla and I are a fresh little family of three with so much excitement and potential on the horizion and so much support and strength from our friends and family behind us that no matter what happens we will be ok… More than ok.
Friday, 4 July 2014: One Year and Ninety Five Days Old.
It was back to reality for my little family today, and Ayla didn’t want a bar of it.
When I dropped her at day care this morning, Ayla cried and clasped onto me and wouldn’t let me go. It was the first time Ayla had reacted like that since her first few weeks of day care and it was heartbreaking.
I knew that Ayla loved our week away, having the attention of both her Daddy and I for a whole seven days, but I didn’t realise how much it actually meant to her.
Ayla’s reaction shone a spotlight on the importance of family first, focusing on our own little nucleus instead of all the day-to-day living activities that often steal our attention.
Going back to work (and life) was also a bit of a downer for me. Not because I don’t love my job or because I’m not grateful for the wonderful life we have, but because with life comes distraction and I know what an impact this can have on Ayla.
I don’t know what the answer is… The answer to life-balance.
To keep a roof over our heads and food on the table, to have the money to afford a good education for Ayla, and still finding funds for the things we enjoy means both of us must work.
It also means we have to dedicate our spare time to renovating and property investing, goodness knows our superannuation won’t be much, and it takes time and commitment to continue building our skills so we can maintain our careers.
But, it all comes at such a cost!
Seeing Ayla in tears this morning brought back my desire to throw all our plans and goals and dreams away and head off on an extended family “holiday”; to not worry at all about the future, or Ayla’s future, and think only of the now.
But while it sounds like a wonderful idea and one that could even be achievable, it’s a risky whim that doesn’t address the real issue, it still doesn’t create balance.
Tuesday, 17 June 2014: One Year and Seventy Eight Days Old.
Oh my goodness I FORGOT Ayla today!
Although I’d been caught up late at work I still had to ring our designer to confirm a few things.
So, I made the call on my mobile on the way home and completely forgot to turn off toward Ayla’s day care.
It wasn’t until after the call had wrapped up and I was only a minute or so from home that I realised!
I think part of the reason I forgot was because in the back of my mind I knew Hubby was home earlier than usual, even though we’d discussed Ayla’s pick up just an hour earlier.
Anyway, I raced through the back streets and pulled up at day care, feeling guilty and a little but ashamed.
I felt guilty because I know most parents probably forget their kid at some point but I didn’t think it would happen to me so soon!
And I was ashamed because I let work take over my brain to the point I forgot to pick up my darling Baby Ayla.
It could have been worse I guess, I arrived before 5pm and Ayla was really none the wiser… If anything she was happier than usual to see me!
Thursday, 29 May 2014: One Year and Sixty Days Old.
I picked Ayla up today to discover piggy tails in her hair!!
Oh my gosh, it was adorable, and I think it might become Ayla’s customary ‘do.
It made me realise that day care is definitely shaping the person Ayla is becoming.
It’s a good thing, I think. If it weren’t for day care I probably wouldn’t have thought to try a pony tail, let alone piggy tails!
I guess sending Ayla today care is particularly useful because I have no idea or experience with anything child related.
For example I probably wouldn’t have thought to try finger painting with Ayla but apparently she loves it!
As good as day care is though, there’s a part of me, deep down, that is sad I’m not discovering these things on my own.
I would love to have seen Ayla’s face the first time she put her hands in a tub of paint, and it would have been so exciting to realise her hair was finally long enough to style!
But I guess it’s all part and parcel of modern day life. So few people are in a position to stay at home with their kids, and I have to remind myself how lucky I was to have a whole year at home.
Today marked the second time in a week someone has commented on my flat chest.
Sure, I’d sort of realised that since going back to work my boobs had shrunk a bit, but I didn’t realise it was so noticeable’
Admittedly I’ve had to pack a whole bunch of bras away until such a time as I become pregnant again, but it turns out my decreasing milk supply is also resulting in ill-fitting frocks!
I’m not quite sure how I feel about it to be honest.
I’ve always been proud of my figure, attributing my boobs to being one of my best physical features, so now that they’re almost gone (like, actually gone) I’m definitely disappointed.
I also feel torn between sadness and pride; sad that my boobs are disappearing into oblivion before my eyes, but proud that I’ve been able to use them to sustain a human life, Ayla’s life, for nearly fourteen months.
I’m sad about the change in my figure, but I’m also proud for having lost my baby weight in a healthy, natural way.
And, I’m sad about the loss of my “youth”… The days of squeezing into too tight tops just to see how many second glances I’d get are LONG gone, but I’m proud to have swapped that for a gorgeous baby girl and her adoring father, and proud that I’m proud of that!
Saturday, 17 May 2014: One Year and Forty Seven Days Old.
Ayla took her first, proper, unassisted steps today!!
Apparently Ayla did take a few steps a day care this week, but Hubby and I decided that it didn’t count unless we saw it for ourselves.
And today, we did!
It’s Saturday so Hubby was working and Ayla and I were busy pottering around the house catching up on a few chores.
Around lunch time Ayla and I decided to take a break, and I put a friends single mattress on the floor so I could stretch out my back and play with Ayla at the same time.
It didn’t take long for Ayla to realise the cushioning properties of the mattress and with minutes she was standing on it and clapping her hands.
I moved down to one end of the mattress and Ayla worked out why straight away; coming at me down the blue foamy runway with four tentative, wobbly, chubby-baby-leg steps!
I squealed with excitement and gave Ayla the biggest hug, which set her off on a pattern of stand-step-step-step-step-fall for the next half an hour.
All I could think of though was how much I wished Hubby was there to share in the moment, and I felt so sad for him missing out.
Thankfully Ayla was so happy to show off her skills that she let me take a quick video (will post it in a sec) so that Daddy could see our little TODDLER in action.
Ayla still isn’t walking around properly yet mind you, but it must only be days away! For now though Ayla seems content to limit her walking to padded surfaces which gives Hubby and I plenty of time to get ready for a whole new chapter.
Sunday, 27 April 2014: One Year, Three Weeks and Five Days Old.
I realised today that one day I’ll probably look back on this time of my life and think they were the best years I’ve ever had.
When that time comes, I don’t want to find myself wishing I’d realised it “back then”, I’d much rather feel lucky for having taken the time to appreciate it while I lived it.
This whole epiphany came about this afternoon while Hubby and I were doing reno’s in the backyard and Ayla was trying her darnedest to “help” us.
As usual I was worrying about the sun, the grass, the power tools, the heat, the attention Ayla wanted and wasn’t getting, and the priority I was putting on renovating instead of Ayla.
But all of a sudden it was like I was looking through a lens and I felt so very grateful.
Although things are crazy busy, overwhelming and sometimes stressful – trying to find the balance between motherhood, career, renovating and studying isn’t easy – I’m blessed with all the things that matter.
Monday, 21 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Six Days Old.
Last Easter Monday Hubby and I were in a hospital room staring at a tiny hours-old Ayla Rose.
We didn’t think life could be any more perfect and precious than what it was that day, and we could hardly wait to show our baby girl the world.
Today, a little more than a year on, and Hubby and I had yet another wonderful Easter Monday making precious memories with our baby girl.
It’s amazing how life seems so much more meaningful and special now that Ayla is part of it.
A couple of years ago, a morning we spent at the beach like we did today would still have been fun, but it wouldn’t have felt new and exciting.
I guess it’s because having Ayla helps me see things through her eyes, and sometimes it feels like the first time.
Normally I never would have noticed the colour of the sand, the sharpness of the rocks or the temperature of the water like I noticed today.
And while I would have enjoyed the warmth of the sun on my back back then, I doubt I would have felt it nourishing the soul like how it felt today.
I have Ayla to thank fort newfound wisdom, and every day she grows and learns more about the world I do too.
Ayla makes the simplest things special and the oldest things new, the most boring things interesting and the average extraordinary.
Tuesday, 18 March 2014: Three Hundred and Fifty One Days Old.
Hubby and I could hardly wait to see what Ayla’s reaction would be when she saw and then rode an elephant for the first time today!
Well… she loved it! Ayla sat up on the elephant with her Daddy and I as we trekked though the jungle and up to the top of a hill that overlooked the ocean.
I think Ayla found it a little hard to comprehend at first because she got so excited at seeing the other elephants with people riding them it was as if they suddenly reminded her of what she was doing.
We got some great photos while on the trek and when we got back to the start we were able to take some more photos, this time with a baby elephant aptly named “Dollar”.
Dollar was quick to give me a cuddle with his trunk and kiss me on the neck… I tried so hard to be calm and collected for Ayla but I certainly wasn’t ready for an elephant hickey!!
Despite my elevated heart rate Ayla stayed relaxed and intrigued by the funny, leathery, hairy thing with a snake like trunk that wanted to tickle her feet and she couldn’t take her eyes away… Until she noticed the monkeys!
There were two monkeys nearby chained up which was sad but secretly I was grateful they couldn’t climb on us (primates aren’t my strong suit)!
Ayla was mesmerised by the monkey’s jittery movements but we were warned not to let Ayla get too close because “he doesn’t like children.” Hubby said he wondered how they worked that out and I was just glad they had!
We got back to the hotel and had a swim and a nap then headed out to a nearby town called Kata to go to the Dino Park putt putt (mini golf).
It was amazing!! I have no idea what Ayla would have made of it all but for Hubby and I we felt like we were playing putt putt in Jurassic Park!
There were life sized and life like dinosaurs riddled throughout the park, and everywhere you could look was thick jungle, sometimes it was almost hard to find the next green!
There was also running creeks and waterfalls, caves and even a giant three storey volcano complete with flames and steam that we had to walk through to play the fourth hole!
It was a bit of a shame Ayla is too small to remember today. Both the elephant trek and the putt putt were awesome adventures that Hubby and I will remember always.
PS – if you haven’t already, please vote for Ayla in the Bonds Babies Search; Australia’s biggest baby photo comp!
C’mon… who wouldn’t wanna see that gorgeous face on a billboard!. Click here to vote