My sweet girl,
Shortly after you were born, I read something that referred to the first few months of life with a newborn as the “100 days of darkness”. They’re hard, those 100 days. Keeping a tiny human alive, wild hormones and #allthefeels (anxiety, guilt, sadness, joy, pride, rage), the sleep deprivation, a healing, postpartum body that feels strange and foreign and saggy, the loneliness that hits at random times, but especially during the middle of the night, the mental wearing of dealing with colicky cries, the knowledge that your life has irrevocably changed and you have to figure out how you fit in this world again. Those first 100 days are hard.
But then it passes. The 100 days slip by in a haze and suddenly, one day, you realize you’re on the other side (or technically speaking, we are almost on the other side; I guess we are only 90-some days in right now but close enough). The tides shift. It becomes easier. It feels more doable. The bad days are fewer; the good days more numerous. We sleep again, full, restful nights of sleep. You smile at our crazy sounds. You coo in response to singing. You chew on your little fists in the most adorable, drooly way. You look around with smooth eye movements and are curious about everything you see. You become less fragile and more stable, holding your head upright and pushing yourself up on your hands. You become less fresh and more human.
It’s the most wonderful thing, making it through those hardest days. The best thing about a second child is that, even though it’s harder in many ways trying to juggle it all with multiple kids, as a parent, you also know it will become easier instead of just hoping that someday it won’t be so insurmountable. And with that thought in mind, I’ve been counting down to 3 months since a few moments after you were born. I knew it would be hard; I remembered it so well from when Henry was little. But I also knew it would become easier.
I’ve continued lugging you to the gym and you sleep in the carseat while I work out. Now that you’re three months old, you can start going to the gym daycare and I’m admittedly a little nervous about it. Henry will give me a full report, I’m sure.
He loves to go in before me to get you up from your naps. He turns off your sound machine, turns on the light, and goes over to your crib and starts talking to you. You love it. “Perriiiiinnnn. Hiiiii little Peanut. Did you sleeeeeep good? I think you did. Your mama is coming.” And you smile at him like he’s your hero.
You love laying on your play mat and kicking at the piano keyboard to make music and batting at the toys hanging overhead. Your little fists have become your favorite chew toy and they are constantly in your mouth.
You haven’t taken to your pacifier like Henry did. We use it occasionally to calm you down, particularly when you’re tired, but you have to be in just the right mood to actually suck on it and, even then, after a few minutes, you push it out with your tongue because you’ve had enough of it.
Naps are finally getting better. Though you’ve been sleeping through the night since 7 weeks, naps were a constant struggle where you’d only sleep for 30-40 minutes and then wake up crying and couldn’t settle yourself back down. The last week or two have shown significant improvements though and you will sometimes nap over 2 hours now. Unfortunately, it’s not at the point of being guaranteed yet so I can only semi-plan things to do (clean the bathrooms, reply to emails, workout on the spin bike, schedule client calls, go play outside in the yard with Henry, etc.) with the knowledge that they might be interrupted. But we’re getting there, slowly but surely.
With your age and development, your personality is continuing to shine. You’re a fairly relaxed little baby now and you generally don’t fuss unless you’re tired, hungry, or overstimulated. In fact, I can always tell when you’re ready for your naps simply because you start to get fussy.
And so, my sweet girl, three months have passed and you have seamlessly inserted yourself into our family, making it nearly impossible to remember what it was like before you. We are whole. We are complete, the four of us. You were just who we were waiting for. You have been absolutely worth every tear shed, every sleepless moment, every throbbing headache, every doubtful terror.
Loving you has been such a pleasure. I am breathing in every moment with you and loving you more than I thought possible. You are my joy.
I love you.