I sit here 32 weeks pregnant, a wave of anxiety comes over me as I think about all that needs to be done before this little boy arrives. Maybe it’s because I know he could be here in a little over four weeks but I feel paralyzed on what really needs to be done. We’ve already been given a timeline for the birth of this large baby and it puts the pressure on knowing I won’t make it to my due date. That I won’t have as long as I should to get everything done. The extra time to make sure everything is perfect for his arrival.
Sometimes I get wrapped up in my own head, as I am sure many moms do, with trying to do it all and be it all. But then the left side of my brain almost seemingly kicks me in my behind and brings me back to reality.
I ask myself, “What does baby want?”
Like really want?!
Not what mom wants, but what baby wants and needs. It’s a simple list. A simple way of living life and one I need to embrace more often, I tell myself.
Baby wants love. Love that overflows from his or her mama and dada and brothers and sisters. Love that is expressed in the squishing of fat baby cheeks and nibbles on their toes. Love that exudes from their proud grandparents as they see their sweet face for the first time.
Not love shown through fancy clothing and expensive things. But true, pure, raw love.
Baby wants warmth. Warmth that can be found nestled between their mamas bosoms. In the fragile arms of their great-grandma as she breathes in that fresh newborn smell and reflects on the life that brought her to this moment. The warmth from a sibling smothering them with love like most siblings do.
Not warmth found in an expensive crib over flowing with fills and frills.
Baby wants food and water. The warm breastmilk that has been busy being made the past nine months as they lay nestled in the womb. The warm milk prepared just for them with love and care from the formula jar. The food that was prepared fresh that day by their mamas or the food that was picked up on her way home after a long day of work.
Not food that is given from a mother too worn down because she thinks she has to do it all and be it all.
Baby wants safety and security. Safety in knowing that his or her needs will be met. The safety and security of a home for them to explore and play freely. The security in knowing their big brother or sister is in the bed next to them in the room they share. The presence of their loved ones who they know will always have a listening ear and a word of encouragement.
Not the false sense of security from parents who are too busy to listen, to play, to be present.
Baby wants a place to belong. A sense of their own place in this established family they have just entered. A physical and mental space where they can thrive and flourish into their best selves, no matter how quirky or different they may appear. A place where they belong no matter their interests.
Not a sense of belonging only found in the way others think they should be.
Basic human needs, this is what baby wants. They don’t need the fancy nurseries, the Etsy made clothing, the fancy house with their own room. The expensive equipment they may not even like. Sure, nice things are great but does it make a difference in baby’s happiness or does it fill an unnecessary void in their mama?
So to my second little one, I promise to give you what you actually want. To not worry about how small our home is or how old our hand-me-down clothes are. How worn the baby equipment we were given is or how small the car is that I will transport you and your sister in.
Because you deserve a mom who is fully present and content with the life she lives and the family she has. Because you, my sweet boy, are all I have ever wanted and more than I knew I needed.