Happy New Year, my dear friends--
Do you want to know my biggest secret about 2015? We're expecting another baby boy on March 7! My goodness, yes. These photos are from our recent trip to Point Reyes just after Christmas. Another baby boy will enter our lives sometime in the early spring and we are over-the-moon excited to welcome this little life. Another boy. Two boys. Double the trains and trucks and trips to the playground. But, of course, I'm going to teach these little boys to knit and bake and sew when they are old enough too. My goodness, two little magical boys.
Life feels full. Physically and emotionally. If you had told me three years ago when I left my day job that I'd be sitting here in the first week of the New Year sharing my news of a second baby boy, thrilled with the announcement of my very first book, and with a stack of studio opportunities on my desk, well, I wouldn't believe you. I just wouldn't believe you. Because I was too afraid to admit that these are the things I wanted most.
But motherhood has made me braver. It's made me focus. It's made me realize that time is finite and nobody is going to come along and tap my head with a magical wand and suddenly make my dreams shift to reality. That's up to me. With heaps of hard work and rigorous focus. That's my job. And it's my job to dare to try. Like it's my job to dare to parent in the way I find most satisfying. Big things that keep all parents up at night and little things like making sure my boys know how to sew. It's up to me. I'm growing into this new version of myself where I'm actually in charge of my own life and the homestead for my little boy/s. It's a wonder. I didn't think I had it in me but it turns out... I do.
This little love will certainly turn our worlds upside down. And it's only through the past three years of motherhood that I can actually understand that I actually can NOT understand exactly what this will mean. That's right. It's only through the process of parenting a tiny human and witnessing and experiencing the changes in my own life that I can be humble and honest enough to admit that I have no idea how we are going to do this again. I will be changed in ways I cannot anticipate or yet understand.
The night feedings, the limited daycare, the lack of boundaries in home and work, the two parent freelance artist schedules, the meals, the budget, the naps, the tiny apartment we call home--it will all be pushed to the edges and then we will find our way through again. Somehow it will all settle in the way that it should. In the way that we need it to. It will shape us and shift us and expand us and shatter us and humble us and humor us and ultimately inspire us in ways I cannot currently comprehend. This much I am certain. This much fills my heart with such a swell that it nearly brings me to tears each time I imagine it. We will grow. We will expand. We will let even more love inside.
So I'm working furiously during every nap, every preschool day, making to do lists and checking them twice, filling my schedule as much as possible before the middle of February when I'll suddenly be full term. And I'll be heavy with a new baby. And I'll be physically slow. And full of anticipation. Oh my goodness. Baby number two.
I can only dream of the way this will change my life. I can only fantasize about the ways I will be chiseled and shaped and the ways in which my familiar heart will soon give sway. Truthfully, I'm sure I'll initially long for these days when it was just the three of us. When my little one was finally potty trained and sleeping through the night and bounding into preschool with his other tiny friends. When it felt familiar and ordinary and predictable too.
When I had time to sit down and make a to-do list and create new projects, new classes, new publications. But the difference is that this time I know those newborn days are fleeting. They are limited. They are tender. They are vulnerable and new. They will subside to infant days and toddler days and I imagine these toddler days subside to school kid days and then I can't imagine much further than that. I tip my hat to all the mamas and papas with children much older than mine. Good grief, how do we let them grow? How can we do anything else? I'm convinced our hearts just swell and swell and swell again. Parenthood, it's fierce.
We can only know what we know and we can only act on so much calculation before instinct and heart begin to steer. I'm sure this new human will coil around my cells with all the magic and promise and newness and complete and utter love that only comes with a new child. Of course, there are things I sometimes miss about my life before I was a mother: Long and leisurely weekend mornings, fancy cocktails in nice restaurants, leather shoes with actual heels, or long and complicated conversations over slow dinners. But mostly, I just miss having time to waste.
But these are just things. They are fleeting. They are passing. They did not ever define me or alter me or motivate me from the very deepest inside out. I wouldn't trade motherhood for anything in the world. I'm not sure I even need to say that but it's worth stating. I wouldn't trade motherhood for anything. Nothing. I can't even imagine. As a friend said to me about her daughter, "I couldn't image my life without her from the moment she was born." So true. And I can only imagine how this feeling will intensify with two. And I welcome that shift with open arms. Excited, nervous, busy, art mama arms. But open arms, nonetheless.
Welcome, 2015, I'm ready to embrace you. In all the magical and mystifying and maddening ways humanly possible. That's my word for 2015: Embrace. It seems this embracing will begin with a new book, a new baby, and a new silhouette of gratitude. Do you have a word or a guide or a mantra for 2015? I find it much simpler than an entire resolution. One word, one thought, one focus to carry me all the 365 days through.
Happy New Year, friends. Thanks for sharing this time with me. I look forward to new adventures in 2015.