It has been quite a year – and quite awhile.
2011 started with me starting to waddle my way through my third pregnancy. The pregnancy itself was slightly more uncomfortable than Lily’s (which was a total breeze), but overall it was a great way to start the year.
Lily truly has blossomed this year. She has morphed from an adorable toddler that was just starting to express her thoughts to a beautiful little girl that oozes kindness, love, and just the right amount of attitude. Her resemblance of me has also skyrocketed. I never fail to be amused or touched by her thoughts, her words, and her actions. Her love for her family, her adoration of her baby brother, and her closeness to me has made me count my blessings each and every day that we have been given such a precious gift of a daughter. Her immediate, unconditional love and acceptance for her baby brother has touched us. While I will miss her at this age, I look forward to seeing what she becomes.
Just when I thought there was no room for more sunshine in our lives, Desmond was born and things became brighter than ever before. His smiles, giggles, and snuggles are beyond compare, and his love and adoration for his big sister has been amazing.
It hasn’t all been sunshine and kisses, though. I found myself broken down both personally and professionally. I went on maternity leave second-guessing myself as a caseworker. I had gotten to a point where I felt nearly worthless and was utterly burnt out. Then I went on maternity leave, which started off more difficult than I could have imagined. I never thought having my second child would be so much more painful than the first. Then there was Desmond’s crying. Our poor little boy couldn’t stop, no matter what we did. I saw my beautiful Lily start to drift away from me because I was in pain and depressed. Our nightly cuddles while watching “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” quickly ceased. I found myself wondering if it was the wrong time to have another child. I found myself wondering if I was ready to care for a newborn again. Then just before I was about to seek professional help, the clouds somehow parted. Desmond stopped crying…and started smiling. And so did I.
The four months I was home with my children was an amazing experience – one that I hated to see end. Lily just flourished while she was home with us, and watching Desmond grow was a great experience as well. I learned more about my own abilities while watching their abilities grow and change. I found a level of self-confidence and comfort that I never knew existed. I took a stand to improve my future and returned to a new environment at work with a new attitude and perspective. While I did not want to return to work, I was able to do so by reminding myself that I would be earning money for my family…for my babies. No longer was I interested in changing the world. I’ve already done that.
THEIR world is all that matters.
There are definitely some aspects of 2011 that I’d like to forget. But I know that I’m leaving the year in a better place then I entered.
I obviously don’t know what 2012 brings…but I’m off to a good start.