Thom was out of town last night, leaving me to parent solo for the evening. Usually, this would lead directly to a post lamenting babies and their stupid baby needs and I'm so exhausted and can't he just take a nice bath and go to bed and why oh why won't he sleep?! BUT. This is not that post.
Much to the disappointment of my Long-Suffering-Mother persona, River was a fantastically agreeable toddler last night. In fact, he has been a fantastically agreeable toddler for quite a while now. That's not to say we don't have our moments. He gets tired, I get tired, sometimes we don't agree on what to do next (I say go for a walk, he says read the freaking mitten book for the thousandth time), and we work it out through pouting, tears, or compromise.
But compared to early motherhood these toddler days are an unimaginable breeze. When River was a few months old there were soaring moments of unbelievable joy...interspersed between horrifying messes, uncontrollable crying, constant neediness, and insane fatigue. The happy moments got me through the day, made all those hard moments worth it, but I was never under the impression that parenting was easy or without it's costs.
Today, the happy moments far outweigh the hard ones. I laugh easier, brood less, find more joy in play, and don't feel so overwhelmed by the task. He's such a happy little boy, and I would love to take credit for that, but really, it's just part of who he is. He loves people, he loves discovering, he loves the world and all it has to offer. He finds a way to make each moment fun. (Sometimes I don't like his expression of fun - stop throwing your raisins on the floor! - but if the alternative is an unhappy child who controls himself but finds no joy in life, I'll take my little rebel any day.)
Thom and I have been thinking for a while that we would like to have another child. It's always been the plan to give River a sibling, and the time seems right. But the time has seemed right for almost a year now, and I (obviously) have not been driven to make it happen. We'll wait until we're settled in the new house. We'll just get through the holidays. We'll wait until spring. There always a good reason to put it off just a little longer.
At times I miss that Baby River, the little, cuddly, fantastically squishy baby who melted my heart and took up every spare inch in my brain. While I can appreciate looking back with rose-colored glasses I know how hard it actually is. I am under no delusions that baby #2 will be easy. And subconsciously I guess I've been wary of messing up this great thing we have now. I am so happy. I love being a mother, and there were days before when I couldn't say that. Can I afford to bring another crying, needy, day-darkening child into our happy home? Can I survive another year of mothering an infant?
I don't know. Maybe? Maybe later, maybe tomorrow. Maybe it would be fantastic and I'm just brooding over nothing.
Now would be a good time for the universe to give me a sign about what to do. Something big. Like getting knocked up. That would be a good sign.
In My Kingdom Cold
2 hours ago