I knew she was growing, of course, could see the changes in her day by day and week by week. But somehow, it all felt so far off - all that big kid stuff. She still curls in my lap to nurse, I wear her around the house, she doesn't talk. But then last week she took three steps! Then again and again she did it. Now suddenly she wants to sit at her high chair and eat whole bowls of pasta while demolishing a sippy cup. Where did my baby go?
Before we got pregnant, when I wondered if children were in God's plan for us, I mentally made myself comfortable with the idea of never being pregnant. I thought about the good works we could do with our extra time and money, I knew we would look into adoption, and I knew that if it was God's will, there would be peace and joy in my heart. But I always viewed it as two choices: a childless life OR a life bursting with children. I thought I'd either be barren or Grace Patton (i.e., many smaller children very close in age).
But it looks like I'm not. It looks like I'm one of those women for whom ecological breastfeeding works REALLY REALLY WELL. i.e., a baby can only come when my cycle returns, i.e., super sorry for the overshare Dad, i.e., maybe I'll ovulate when Zuzu weans, sometime before her freshmen year of high school (was that crossing a line? are you grossed out, Jen? Coll? Sorry!).
I have to make peace with a whole bunch of new ideas about my family. That Zuzu and her siblings might be spaced further apart, that I may have fewer children as a result of that spacing, or that I could have no more children (secondary infertility IS a thing). Isn't it so dumb? You think I'd get it by now - God is in charge of my family! Mr. Oram and I started our life together with the understanding that he always would be, that we would trust him with our family size. But I always thought that would be stoically accepting my childless state while aging gracefully, or blissfully embracing the craziness of six kids in seven years while being able to blame any lingering 10 pounds on constantly being postpartum. I didn't think it'd be smiling graciously through the three-inquiries-in-a-row of "isn't it time she get a sibling?"
I keep trying to type more, but what comes out is not good so I think I'll sign off without any great message or closure.
Just didn't think I'd hit my baby's first birthday without being pregnant.