Every scratching sound this pen makes causes a wince, just in case it rouses the sleeping babe. She is so adorable in her dark blue sleepsuit, curled up under her light blue blanket, feet sticking out. She seems so completely lost in her peace – as though she has allowed herself to succumb to nature itself without apology. Her reward… A restful sleep of the kind only afforded to adults in the enchanted forests of novels and fairy tales.
I ask myself the question- how am I feeling this morning – and the usual resounding “I don’t really know” was the response I chose to give myself. Maybe that’s the truth… Maybe it’s not. I don’t know where lies end and truth begins. I doubt the two things even really exist.
The whirring sound of the washing machine is pleasant. Sometimes, such sounds make me sad. Any sound that B finds comforting makes me emotional – it reminds me that she had a life, before she was thrust away from Home. That she had a consciousness that still plays a part in her daily life – she still craves the familiarity of what she knows as Home, and the sound of a vacuum cleaner, or washing machine, or a song that she heard in the womb reminds her of that life. It fills me with a strange melancholy- maybe that isn’t the right word, actually, but it makes me feel tremendous protectiveness towards her, because she’s not a blank slate. She has associations, and her own sense of equilibrium, or she did – and it’s been deeply disturbed. It’s too easy to dismiss a baby as being an empty vessel that simply eats, sleeps, and poops, but she isn’t. She’s an ACTUAL person, with memories of a life before, and she has been wrenched away from all that she knows. I love how she responds to the opening of Riders On The Storm – that she responds to something that I played to her from outside the womb while her consciousness was developing. Hindsight is a wonderful thing; had I truly considered what she was, what she was going through when she was living in me, I might have done things a bit differently. Then again, maybe I wouldn’t. Only the next one, if there is a next one, will be any demonstration of lessons learned from this insight. Theory is all well & good, but the reality is that you don’t know anything until you’ve experienced it in your own body, in your own brain, through your own lens of perception. Then you have to accept that you’ve only got your own lens of perception to reference, so there’s a universe of experience and understanding that you will never have. Amazing, really.
It is interesting, feeling like you’re perfectly content spending time with your baby. Yesterday I discussed the merits of Baby & Mother classes and drew the conclusion that I really am content, and at my most authentic, when playing with B. How does that happen? It’s such a pure feeling – that sense of connection, the moments of engagement that you share, the willingness on both sides to learn to communicate. I’m positive that classes are great for new mums who crave validation and company, and who don’t squeeze every moment of existential education they can out of every interaction they have with their baby, but for me….. I kind of want to keep this bubble of fun and games & mutual confusion to myself for just a little while longer.
Maybe that isn’t fair on her, though. My view, is that she’s perfectly content without lots of craziness at the moment – she does, after all, spend ages staring at the window and chatting to a cushion. The gift of a child is subversion, right? That they are able to take anything, and turn it into an object of play. Why ruin that by imposing our boring, categorically uncreative approach to play on them? Let’s be honest, as we get older, our creativity dwindles in favour of structured schema – objects have names, definition, purpose… We need that stuff to get stuff done to be productive adults, but children… They are the best inventors around. I believe in letting my baby show me how to interact with the world creatively, not the other way around. My perspectives are too staid to be of much value in comparison.
Anyway, I don’t feel like there’s much swirling around this morning. Perhaps I feel peaceful after a day of talking truthfully about everything that’s going on in my world – so there’s less noise. It’s wonderful being lucky enough to have great people around. That may be another reason why I don’t feel a lack of company despite being cocooned up with a baby. I don’t feel like it’s a bad situation at all in terms of my social life – and having a reason to indulge my fantasy of hibernating in winter on purpose by being Mama Bear for a while.. I like it. The only time I question is when a little voice in my head starts to bleat about what I SHOULD be doing.
Hmm. Fear. Is this all just fear talking? I don’t know.
Anyway, on with the day. The mind turns to the thought of tea. Yummy.