Being at MommyCon last Sunday, hearing the great speakers, seeing all the naturally-minded mamas, families, and companies…it was such a great way to start the week. Lots of talk about birth – breastfeeding – parenting – choices. The theme that ran through all the speeches, although I think very much unplanned, was about the cycle of things, and the journey we are on.
I followed that day up with a coaching session with Blue Russ on Monday…it really brought my “journey” into technicolor. She asked me some hard questions – some I don’t have an answer to yet. The word journey is used in so many platitudes about life and living…yet I look at where I am today and I see it.
I am on a path that I don’t want to leave, yet in order to continue to grow, I have to move onto the next chapter, way station, season, turn the corner…what ever you want to call it. There is so much that I love about pregnancy, labor, birth, breastfeeding, infancy…so much that is unique, irreplaceable and it cannot be duplicated. I don’t know what I am going to find that meets the satisfaction I find in that life cycle.
And yet, reality sinks in. We can’t possibly keep adding children infinitely. Our respective ages as parents (both 40+), our financial stability, our goals for our family…it feels like it is time to stop having children. I see our children’s insatiable desire for the things they love – they want more dolls, Legos, what ever their obsession du jour is. I reflect and wonder, and find the lesson – am I the cause of this? Is my seemingly insatiable desire for more pregnancy-birth-breastfeeding-babies rubbing off on them?
My eyes are starting to well with tears as I write this. This sharing with you – the rawness at my core – I am hoping it will be one more step in starting to leave this path of “the baby craze clock ticking” phase, and move onto the path of “growing with the children” phase.
I am getting used to the fact that my breastfed toddler is it. There will be no more babies to take her place at the breast when she weans. We are going to move on as a family, and she will never get to be a big sister to a biological sibling.
So what am I grateful for as a mourn this transition? I am grateful for our four healthy children. I am grateful for the ability to have children. I am grateful for the most amazing spouse I could have dreamed of – he is just right for me. I am grateful that we live in a time and a place where we can teach, and help other families learn about the things that have made such a difference to us as parents.
So today, I have taken one more step toward being okay with not being pregnant again. Please accept my thanks for letting me share this with you. And please understand why I may tear up when I see you holding your sweet, smiling infant. It’s just because I love what you two have – and I wish you all the best on your journey.