Six months passed and I’m back at work. Yep. Retraining my “goo goo ga ga brain” into “business cat” mode. First day was a killer – all stress and guilt – will my mum cope with Ghaya or is she packing her bag right now. Am I a shit mother that I leave my baby for long hours, will I manage at work, will I deliver? All that whirling like in a broken thumping overloaded washing machine. Turns out Ghaya is absolutely fine, first day at work was a novelty to me (had to read to myself aloud to understand and process and it felt funny to have a luxury of being able to focus on anything for more than an hour AN HOUR!!!! without any disruptions), my mum survives and I can still breastfeed Ghaya as soon as I’m coming back. Small successes. Small steps.
Every baby is different they say. The second one is easier – they say. It’s easier with Ghaya – I say – perhaps because I’m used to sleepless nights.
But when your baby suddenly decides to suck your boob 6 hours straight at night. It still hurts you know, the boob, when they feed, you know… but you can put on a brave face and suffer through for the immense love that’s inside you…
NOT FOR SIX HOURS STRAIGHT WHEN YOU TRY TO SLEEP IN A SITTING POSITION WITH YOUR UNPROPPED ARMS HOLDING 4KG.
The first two hours you are so happy to see your baby eat. In the third hour you try to put yo baby down for just 15 minutes so you could have a rest, maybe a short nap with God’s help. Only to be treated with the deafening scream so powerful that if you were made of glass that’s it – you would become a million pieces in the first nanosecond of the resonating sound.
In the fourth hour you beg your husband to take the baby with him to the furthest room from your bedroom and just for reference you check your breast which from cup size D turned into “whatever three sizes below flat” there is. Then you cover your ears with the pillow (because the shrieking hunger cry does not stop) and keep repeating: “but I’m pretty sure I ran out of milk! I don’t have milk anymore”.
In the fifth hour you start crying hysterically only to start wondering if you are really upset because the bloody tears are not coming out of your eyes. You then realise you’re bloody dehydrated from all the sucking. With your baby still stuck to your nipple you start feeling so dry that half a litre of water passed by your husband and drank with one gulp still does not help producing saliva and you’re pretty sure your brain shrank to the size of a resin because the 90% of water they keep saying we are made off is gone. GONE! Forever! Next thing – you’re trying to check your nipples if by any chance blood is not pouring out of them. Your baby-turned-vampire has now definitely moved on to your veins for the supply of any liquid.
Then you fall asleep and wake up only twice more for relaxing shorter feeds.
7am – you wake up, although you’re not sure if it’s still you. You’re on your own now. You and the zombie
It’s been two weeks and two days since my second beam of love, life and joy greeted this world and I feel myself again. My mind and my body have been recovered and I feel fulfilled. Although I do admit, I look at this peaceful tiny face and I think to myself: “This is the last time I’m holding such a tiny thing in my hands. Surely we won’t have another one. This is it. Now watch them both grow and no turning back time. So remember each cell, each gesture, like this one: each facial expression, like this one 🙂
I kept my pregnancy under the bonnet again. And only because I was so scared that if I share the news and something goes wrong facing the world will be unbearable. I know because I’ve been there already. I don’t believe in being optimistic anymore. Realistic is the way forward. “Prepare for as many options as you can. The good and the bad ones”
Another reason why I was quiet was because pregnancy made me. It literally did. For the last few months I was a vegetation basket pulled to the ground with the strength of approx 5G. My brain was mushy and I did not feel myself at all – physically, emotionally, mentally.
But now, here she is. And we are a family of 5 (including our Bastian of course).
Today was very emotional. Well, the whole week was but when you see a teacher and a driver loading toys onto a truck in front of your daughter’s first nursery you instantly burst out crying. You wonder if your child understands what’s happening,when passing corridors with walls bare without signs and posters, toys lined up on the tables as if waiting for a new owner. With her usual cheerful face, greeting her teachers, only this time throwing a bunch of flowers into the director’s hands, Arya started her last day in the Marble Arch Nursery. Because some prick priest (sorry, that’s what I feel) had to claim the space in the basement and eventually won’t the battle with the nursery director for whatever activity he wants to carry out there.
Arya, hugging and kissing, was she aware that this was her last day?
When we entered the classroom to take a photo, Arya looked so comfortable and confident there looking at me and Sanj with the “this is my hood” spark in her eye.
Well, no more sweetheart and one only hopes that mums of your friends will let them see you from time to time after the nursery closes this evening.
So many sleepless nights – will she enjoy the new nursery? How long will the settling in last? Will she remember?
Thank you Marble Arch Nursery for massively contributing to our daughter’s great development. For all the friendships she’s made with adults and children.
For some reason Arya for months now has been a big fan of Nemo and Dory without even seeing a single frame of either of the animations. She has her Finding Nemo treasure book with the characters and plays with them every day.
Come Saturday, the Moodleys plan is to watch a movie together (symulatig cinema with popcorn and large Coke) while Arya sleeps. Yesterday afternoon while browsing Sky store we noticed there’s Finding Dory. BLOODY £5.45 it was for later and a crappy programme for us during the afternoon nap.
In the evening after Arya’s dinner I put Arya next to me and Sanj put the movie on.
The reaction was priceless. The first scene with little Dory and Arya’s face lit up. She covered her mouth with excitement like a celebrity on hearing her name at the announcement of the winner of the best actress Oscar Award. I have never seen this reaction before. She smiled every time little Dory was on and stayed tuned throughout the whole movie (another new thing in the world of our hummingbird). I watched all emotions coming out of this little soul. Happiness, worry, fear, surprise, excitement…
It was amazing. It was amazing that our baby matures emotionally, connects with characters and feels for them.
Milestone… this one’s huge.
Arya slept in her own bed, on her own for the whole night. Not a single wake-up in between until 7:15. So I guess it’s another milestone for us, for me rather than for Arya as she probably doesn’t give a squat unless she gets milk once she’s up.
It’s one of those “happen when ready” moments again – for all this time I was simply not prepared to let my baby lie stranded in a big bed with no one beside her, checking if she’s breathing. The thought of sleeping snug with my husband while my poor daughter is out there, in another room with no one beside her. No one wants to sleep alone. Right…
But last night, we just put Arya to HER bed, (it took a while because this girl refuses to sleep) and returned to the sleeping arrangement from the time before Arya was born. Husband and wife reunited. And survived.
This is another era ending. I remember each milestone and having to let go. Very likely have been doing all this completely off the book and later than any other parent but I-DO-NOT-CARE! “Ready” is the magic word. Remember that!
Last Saturday I experienced a day I had waited my lifetime.
Arya turned 1 on 11th February and last Saturday we celebrated this milestone in Poland.
Initially, there were supposed to be around 50 guests but due to various reasons 22 adults and 11 children turned out and although those who were missing were missed the afternoon could have not been more amazing.
For the event I choose The Palace in Popowo Stare in Poland. After the naming ceremony didn’t happen due to the hated by me, family politics, all my energy and effort were focused around making sure Arya Sofia’s 1st birthday was going to be the memorable experience full of love and happiness. The palace staff prepared everything according to my strict instructions and although it’s still very hard to virtually communicate in Poland in order to get the service providers work their asses off to please the customer, this time, luckily, my perseverance and pushing (again) paid off.
My stress level was high up to a very last moment, culminating when I was pushing the soft shoes into my baby’s feet with no success and me shouting with frustration: “I can’t do it! In leaving”.
Thank God for my sister who took over while I was a total melt down.
5 minutes before the scheduled birthday there was absolutely no one in the palace and I was an utter bundle of nerves, ready to hide myself in some deep deep corner to rock myself back and fort to a complete madness.
13:00 sharp and suddenly the palace spilled with guests so Sanj and I took my beautiful but sniffly Arya outside through the back gate to ride into the front court:
There were many moments when I was fighting tears with emotion while looking at oblivious Arya. It was the time I waited for my entire life (those who know me, understand that it literally was a lifetime waiting) and everyone claimed they enjoyed themselves.
It’s one of these things I say that are hard to comprehend. Because they are beyond here and now.
To Arya Sofia
Thank you my baby for coming down into this life. I could only scold you for letting me feel this darkness without for such a long time. But now that you’re with me, nothing else matters. The scar is just a representation of how much I needed you to be near me in flesh.
I don’t wish anything for your birthday. Live your life and I want to be part of it as much as you allow me to be but please don’t be upset with me for trying to always protect you and love you.
It was coming. On foot. Tiny little feet. In fact, I actually thought it would happen earlier and before crawling. That said – it happened. On Monday, 23rd November 2015. I stood Arya in the middle of the room, moved one step (my step) away from her and called her to come to me. And she did. All by herself. Four steps. Her first four, UNASSISTED, steps. Wobbly and shaky like Bambi’s legs (it’s just he made his first steps right after he slid off his mum’s uterus, it took Arya 9.5 months to reach this milestone). I did my victory dance (Im lying, I don’t have a victory dance and probably whatever I did to celebrate my baby’s accomplishment could be compared to a mouse wiggling after consuming a large portion of poison; there was a lot of squeaking too. I never knew a human being is able to produce such sounds and still hear them). Arya, after a tiring journey of four steps, fell on me and started feasting on my neck flesh (possibly trying to get to the milk; I don’t understand that after 9.5 months she still confuses different body parts for a nipple and I do not have warts that could potentially be mistaken for a nipple; unless she thinks that whatever part of my body she sucks milk will automatically flow to her like through a straw).
Being a demanding parent, I must say I have been practising the walk since Monday trying to catch the moment and send the video to every known human being (I lie again – just to Sanj and my mum and sis; this lying thing becomes a pattern you think but I can assure you I’m not a pathological lier; I just like to exaggerate for dramatic purposes). And today, I can confirm, this whole walking thing has caught on. I believe, by the end of this week my daughter will stroll on her own. As braking, turning and other tricks are covered in more advanced levels of this chapter so I realise there will be lots of bumping into walls and other vertical and horizontal surfaces. Shall I get her a helmet? I swear I’ve seen such gear on some baby website. It is tempting.
So just quickly before my British Fashion Awards preparations start and yes, they are very important to me and no, not as much as my family but yes, very!
My baby, my 9.5 months-old baby made her first steps today at 11:56. There were four of them and Arya landed right in my arms. I guess it’s like a bicycle ride – you first learn to ride but braking is lesson two.
Her perseverance and stubbornness paid.
See, mum being stubborn is good!