Last week was a funny old week really; filled with cleaning, school runs, laundry and adjusting back to life around work and school. In some ways it was a bit of a let down following the highs of Christmas with all its magic and adventures, lazy days and eating whatevs. In other ways it was an exciting new start filled with some big new changes for the smallest member of our household! We bid farewell to the carrycot/bassinet on the pram and popped on the seat, introduced her casually to her first tastes of food following some chats at the weighing clinic, and I realised I had a whole lot of acceptance to face!
It probably doesn’t seem much on the surface to the other parents out there, seat changes on the pram…so what, it is a natural and ordinary moment with kids in your life. But for me it was a moment filled both with great joy and a lot of emotion too. It was a moment that marked a new phase for Alice and a new phase for me as I saw it as a moment to say goodbye to my little newborn baby, and acknowledge her as a quickly growing more independent infant. It was a moment I needed a few days to adjust to as it reminded me again of what I really lost with Poppy.
You see for so long I have said both on here and out loud that I didn’t just lose a baby but a whole lifetime with a child too, and yet never really digested what all of those losses were. Only since having Alice have I began to see what exactly was lost as I live each step with her.
Having Alice filled my arms with a baby again, filled my heart with love and joy again, and yet (as we expected she would) periodically reminds us of all of the little moments missed with Poppy. Moments like seat changes on the pram and the wonder as they sample that first taste of something other than milk. They are big changes, exciting ordinary moments that come with the territory of raising small humans, things to record in their journals or scrapbooks with pictures. But they are also the moments that are missing from Poppy’s brief life.
Its a strange thing because whilst we have these reminders, they are in a way a connection to her sister and way of bringing her more present in our lives. I don’t know if that makes sense, but its another way that our joys and sadness’s are intertwined now.
For so long I missed my baby, I wanted a baby, and then I felt ready, and thankfully I was blessed to be able to have our beautiful rainbow baby. I was and have been so overjoyed with that fact, that I have never really looked beyond the sweet new born stage. I was so wrapped up in enjoying and experiencing again all I had lost with my new little girl that suddenly here I am having to say goodbye to it. Here we are already out of that stage and its a little bit emotional for me to accept. Maybe its because I don’t know if she is the last, or if it really is down to the fact its just come and gone so quickly that it took me by surprise to suddenly hit so many changes in one week. Its weird because there is part of me that normally would see it to be so insignificant, and yet it knocked me a little and caused me to reflect and realise that it was hard because I was experiencing a new chapter, and that I have to accept that she is no longer that new born baby I have longed for for so long. I cannot cling onto her as that (and nor would I want to), but she is now in a new phase of her life with almost sitting up, riding in the pram seat and eating food. It is something to be excited for, a moment to capture and shout hooray for, something to celebrate with her in.
Moving her into the seat has been so wonderful for her this week. She loves having more room and being sat up, and I love that we smile far more at each other as we wander down the street. Its a gorgeous sight to see those 2 little blue eyes peeping out at you, and its lovely to see her looking around and looking so big and yet so little too. Its exciting to see her taking in the world around her and smiling when she sees things that catch her eye. And I personally love that it has opened up space in the basket to throw in all of my tat when we shop. But i’d be lying to myself if I didn’t acknowledge that moving her into the pram seat was a big thing, even a hard thing for me, because this ordinary moment that I knew was coming, meant I have to say goodbye to longed for little babies and a stage I have stretched out, and welcome/adjust to a new stage with new experiences. One that is going to be fun for us all and exciting, and yet one that is also filled with so many moments of acceptance and more reminders of all of those little sweet moments and milestones that are lost with the passing of a baby!
She really does bring me so much joy and healing and makes me laugh so much as I watch her developing from a baby into a little girl, and as hard as these adjustments along the way are, they are most certainly worth it for both holding onto the memory of Poppy and imagining life with her too, and also being able to experience greater happiness that we ever thought possible again in life here and now. Its not just a seat change to us, its a moment and milestone that holds much more than that!