There were a lot of days in the first year of Henry's life where I felt like I was drowning. Motherhood was hard and it didn't feel like it was getting easier. I was exhausted, I was constantly worried, I was convinced I was screwing everything up. Though now looking back on it, it feels like it went at lightning speed, when I was in it, it felt like a race I was never going to finish. Of course there were moments where I felt like I was in heaven. When he would close his eyes and fall asleep so easily while he was laying on my chest. His tiny body moving up and down with his deep breaths. Breathing in his new baby smell. It was magical. But do I miss it? No.
Things are just easier now. My life isn't one constant stream of worriedness. I don't have my hand permanently over his chest while he's sleeping to make sure he's still breathing. I don't worry that his head is going to be sharply misformed if he doesn't get enough tummy time. I don't have to try and decipher screams (though sometimes I do have to decipher whines). I don't have to worry if he's eating enough, because he's able to let me know if he's full. I am able to turn my head and not have to worry if he's still breathing, or if he's fallen from somewhere- though, most likely he's gotten into something that he shouldn't be.
I know so many people miss the newborn stage as soon as their babies are out of it. But I don't. I like this stage. It's definitely my favorite so far. I love that Henry is more independent, that he's able to somewhat let us know what he wants, that we can communicate, even if it is strained. And we can laugh and play together. We can enjoy our time spent with one another. He's still my baby, and I still worry about a lot of things. But things are definitely easier now.