Wow… This parenting thing is intense. I have no idea of how to process all of the craziness, but I know that I don’t want to allow this incredible time to fade into the dark recesses of memory that I won’t be able to access when old age hits me and it becomes ever tougher to recall the vaults of a lifetime. My consciousness is even messier than usual as a lack of sleep takes over and jumbles everything in my brain up to the point where I’m simply humming along, but there is SO much happening that I can’t let it disappear without making some attempt to save it. Maybe one day I’ll be able to look back on these entries and jog my own brain into remembering the rollercoaster ride of emotion that becoming a parent is. This is one experience I never want to forget.
I’ve been a parent for 6 weeks and 5 days. I’m a PARENT. Yikes. This is real grown up territory. Even now, I don’t feel like an adult – I feel more unsure than ever, as the ground shifts beneath my feet and all of my ideas about EVERYTHING are challenged (again!). I’m fully responsible for the wellbeing of another human being and there’s no room for simply not being bothered, or not getting out of bed for another hour, or switching off. I didn’t realize, until now, just how lazy I am. How easily I can talk myself out of doing things and justifying my bad decisions to myself. It’s a steep learning curve on matters of the Self, being so involved in the wellbeing of another human being, on their own journey of finding themselves. Being the parent of a bundle of Life – and that’s what she is – an incredible little creature that looks to you for everything; food, water, comfort, validation, stimulation, calm, and all the human love you can muster, brings home what it truly means to be a contributing member of human society. As the days fly by, often in a sleep deprived haze, I watch Creation in action. It’s challenging every perception I have, about EVERYTHING, but man… I’ve never been so privileged as to witness, and to be an intricate part of such a miracle. That’s what I feel as I write these words – that I’m part of something miraculous.
It’s a wonderful education being around a baby. I had never realised, until having a newborn thrust into my arms, just how immense the experience of being a baby in its early stages must be. It’s obvious now; but before I looked into her eyes and felt her looking back at me, expressing her complete trust in me and the helplessness she felt being in this unfamiliar world, I didn’t consciously consider what it might actually feel like to be so….New to everything. I can’t actually think about it in the depth I want to, because I get to a certain point and my brain feels like it will explode with the intensity of it all. I try to imagine it….Going suddenly from a consciousness that lives inside another human body, warm, protected, surrounded by the throng of the internal workings of someone else’s physiology, into a cold, bright, entirely alien landscape…. All of the senses, until now, allowed to develop inside the gentle, comforting bubble of the mother’s body, jerked suddenly into intense action as the eyes see the faces of creatures never conceived of with absolutely no reference point to cling to for a sense of security except a sense of the body that has been lived in for so many months… Searching desperately for some sense of the life known before; a familiar smell, the sound of the heartbeat that has cultivated life until now…Something to cling to during the insanity of being jettisoned into the alien world of Outside…. It’s insane. There are no words, no pre-conceptions, no schemata for or of ANYTHING. It’s all just one big onslaught of sensory information with no order. My brain is feeling ready to explode. I can’t handle it, but this incredible bundle of life, sleeping in her crib, is handling it every day. She’s on the most mind – boggling trip imaginable, and I’m right there with her, holding her hand. She seems to be handling it all far better than I am.
What a privilege.
There’s so much going on in my brain that isn’t being processed properly!! It’s frustrating being so completely sleep deprived that my brain isn’t having the time to process all of the general brain boggling that is happening at the moment; the only thing I have clarity on, is that the sands feel as though they are shifting in the very foundation of what I think existence is actually about, and that I am incredibly lucky to be here, now, seeing Life transform from a physical vessel into something that words can’t describe.
That’s the theme. I can’t find the words. And I don’t know if I want to. It all seems far beyond them, somehow – but words are all I have. So I’m going to do my best to find them so I don’t lose this. I’m terrified that I’ll forget it all. But that’s another set of thoughts, for another sleep deprived day, which is every day. Did I ever sleep for 12 hours straight?
12 hours of sleep! A cruel dream.. Must stop thinking about it; it hurts too much.
Speaking of sleep… I hear a baby stirring. Must be time to change a nappy; which is, in itself, an art form. Maybe not an art form, actually, but it requires incredible skill. I keep telling myself that, anyway, because it’s the only thing I feel vaguely competent at these days….