Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Heart Ache

Dear M,

It's not your birthday or a special occasion, but I still feel compelled to write to you. You are 27 months old - a toddler - officially in the "terrible two's." But you know what? Things aren't so terrible. In fact, they are quite wonderful. You are wonderful. And that is why I am writing you. So that you know how wonderful I think you are and how much I love you.

Did you know that mommy rocked you in your rocking chair until you were 26 months old? Yes I did. I rocked you in that rocking chair from the day you came home from the hospital until just a few weeks ago. We rocked together every evening for 20 minutes and then I would put you to bed in your crib. I did this even as I wondered whether we were exceeding the weight limit for that rocking chair and even as I struggled to cradle your legs as they dangled far over the arm of the chair. I told myself that you wanted to be rocked each night. That you wanted to lay your head down on my chest. That you wanted me to cuddle you.

But the truth is that you probably would have been content to go to sleep without all that rocking a long time ago. It was me. I wanted all those nights in the dark, cuddling together, reciting nursery rhymes, talking about our day.

The last week that we used the rocking chair was last month. It just happened. You decided it was time to sleep in your "big" bed in your new room. You left your crib behind without a second thought - and with it, you left behind our rocking chair. You didn't need it anymore. It was almost like you had forgotten all about it.

I kept thinking you would ask for me again - and the rocking chair - but you haven't.

*****

I think about our rocking chair every night. I see it when I close my eyes at night.

You are growing up. Faster than I could ever imagine. You are more a boy than a baby. You are changing. Your baby speak is getting less babyish. You are a phenomenal, sensitive, beautiful child. And I am happy to meet this new, loving boy.

But no one told me that a mother's heart could ache, even when everything is so good and perfect. Or that motherhood would be filled with good-byes. Or that the thought of a rocking chair could plague me for weeks during my second year of motherhood.

You may be growing up, but you will always be my baby. With or without the rocking chair.

22 Comments:

Anonymous pinks & Blues Girls said...

So beautiful and so heatwrenching. And what a gorgeous room!

Jane, Pinks & Blues

12:01 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

I think that ache helps seal the memories, enabling us to always reach back and feel their heads upon our chests and smell, if only for a moment, that inimitable scent of baby.

12:10 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

That's lovely. Make sure you print that one and put it in a keepsake box for him.

12:11 PM  
Blogger Kyla said...

Straight to the heart.

This was incredibly touching.

12:31 PM  
Blogger Dana a/k/a Sunshine said...

Um, christina, thanks for making me cry at my desk at work (not that I'm blogging at work, oh, no sir, not blogging at work...)

Very beautiful post and moving. I know how you feel.

12:43 PM  
Blogger Pumpkin said...

Good grief woman....my eyes are all wet now...and that almost NEVER happens (big tough Scottish lass y'see!)....seriously I don't think I've read anything that beautiful and utterly heart-ache-worthy in a while.....

Now where's the god-damned tissues?!!!!!!!!
xxxxxx

12:47 PM  
Blogger Lawyer Mama said...

That was so sweet and touching.

We have the same rocking chair and I rocked Hollis in it for 2 years before he decided he didn't need it any more. If it helps, he still asks me to rock him every now and then.

1:15 PM  
Blogger carrie said...

What a beautiful letter to M.

And I totally get the whole rocking chair thing - there is always something that symbolizes the end of real "babyhood" whether it's a big boy bed, the loss of a certain ritual or the rocking in the rocking chair. *sigh* They grow way too fast.

4:44 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

I'm getting all teary now. Dammit. That was lovely.

6:44 PM  
Blogger Blogversary said...

So true.

7:00 PM  
Anonymous Foggy City Mommy said...

I want to cry because Ricky and I do the same thing. I keep a diary where I write him daily letters I think I am going to give him the dairy on his 25th bday.

9:53 PM  
Blogger kgirl said...

oh, such sweetness. Bee is 28 months and I don't ever want to stop rocking her either.

5:34 AM  
Blogger Mimi aka pz5wjj said...

Oh, I miss rocking my kids!

7:16 AM  
Anonymous Andrea said...

I miss the rocking chair, too. However, Gabe surprised me immensely a couple weeks ago when he asked me to rock him and sing "our" song. The rocking chair has been in storage (and is coming back yay!) so I had to improvise, not to mention the ever-shrinking lap made it hard along with his 3 1/2 year old lankiness, but HE asked ME to rock HIM, and after about a 18 month hiatus on the rocking.

So occasionally, I get to rock him again. And it is just as sweet now as it was then. Only now, I know how to savor it.

10:13 AM  
Blogger The Hotfessional said...

Lovely post. My baby will be 16 on the 16th. I still want to rock him.

11:54 AM  
Anonymous chelle said...

gasp. you made me cry. they grow up way too fast. I miss rocking my babies.

8:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe it's the pregnancy hormones at 15 weeks, but i cried from the sincerity of your post. Maybe you feel like you've lost a part of him physically, but emotionally your memories will remain forever.

1:43 PM  
Blogger lildb said...

Cristina. That was immense. Lovely. Shattering.

True.

10:09 PM  
Blogger Kelly said...

I want to go upstairs and make bang the bathroom cabinets in a vain attempt that it will wake my 16 month old son from sleep just so I can selfishly rock him back into slumber.
The heart aches...

7:50 PM  
Anonymous TB said...

Lovely. I've just been thinking about how quickly the times goes as well.

8:18 AM  
Blogger Damselfly said...

What a beautiful nursery -- and a beautiful post. Those "no occasion" occasions are the best.

8:01 PM  
Anonymous Bedroom furniture said...

Children also have a sense of belongingness just like adults. They want to have everything, which belongs to them. They feel proud to show the things to their friends which they can refer to as ‘Mine’. Children’s rocking chairs are one of them. These chairs can belong only to children so they are very happy. And kids will have a lot of fun on these rocking chairs. To give your child a ‘rocking’ experience here are some special chairs.
Our Little Angel Rocker- the design of some of our rocking chair will remind the kid of a rainbow. This rainbow is located at the back of the chair and below is a little heart. This heart carries a message “Our Little Angel”. Just gift your kid this chair and convey what he or she means for you.

3:31 PM  

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