Lewis & I were talking yesterday about how fast everything is going with Isis. We were actually talking about changing diapers specifically and somehow it turned into a conversation about how fast things were going and about our perspectives. For example, with the diapers, Lewis and I had both read about some studies that were done that showed that children bonded and felt more connected to the people who changed their diapers because it's such an intimate and also very necessary part of their day. You can tell in the way they look at the person changing their diapers. There is another study that we read that showed that specifically dads who got involved with the details, like changing diapers, from birth impacted the child's academic achievement throughout life. It just set a tone for involvement and attention throughout the child's life. How does this relate to anything, you may ask? Well, I'll tell you.
Lewis said he had been thinking about all these milestones he was excited for Isis to reach, like rolling over and sitting up and reaching for things, putting things in her mouth, etc. He said he gets excited about the next milestone each time. (Right now we are excited about when she starts holding her arms up for you to pick her up or for a hug - when does that happen?) But he said that he'll actually be sad when she's potty trained and he doesn't have to change her diaper anymore. I said that was a strange thing to be sad about, but he said you can just tell when you're changing her diaper that she knows that what you're doing is important and that it makes her feel better to have a clean, dry diaper. Isis in particular LOVES having her diaper changed and is always really smiley and giggly while you are doing it.
But this led into a conversation about changing diapers and poop and how lots of people (dads?) are just grossed out by their kid's poop and won't change a diaper. Lewis thinks it is really awful if a dad does that. Nobody likes dealing with someone else's feces, but when it's your baby - who can't control it - to say you won't change it is like saying you'll marry your wife, but if she throws up or something, she's on her own. We decided it's all about perspective. For us, every poopy (or pee) diaper has meant that she is eating well and digesting and that her body is working properly. We have actually let out a frequent "yay!" at the sight of poop in her diaper, because it means she's healthy!! And when that poop changes and gets stinky or more solid or whatever due to changes in her diet, we won't "yay!" over the stinkiness, but we will definitely "yay!" over the fact that she can eat solid foods and can digest them and is growing up!!
When I was in labor, each contraction wasn't just horrible pain in my opinion, it was my body moving Isis one step closer to my arms. It was her moving one more millimeter closer to me, closer to her daddy, closer to our life together. I really had to go there in my head because if I allowed myself to focus on the pain, I wouldn't have gotten through it. It was all about perspective.
When Isis wakes up now in the middle of the night, it's very rare. Last night she woke up at 4am for the first time in over 2 weeks. And sure, I could've gotten frustrated because she doesn't wake up in the middle of the night really anymore, but instead I chose to enjoy one more middle of the night feeding. She doesn't need them anymore usually unless she's having a growth spurt or something is weird with her schedule, so those special moments I used to have with her where it felt like just me and her awake while the world was asleep are gone for the most part. So it was nice to just have that time with her. It's all about perspective.
As she grows up, I hope to always keep things in perspective. Not that I won't miss some things that she will grow out of - like her naps in my arms. She WON'T sleep if I hold her now. Remember when I had a hard time with holding her for her naps everyday? Such a short period. But I want to always remember that every milestone she reaches, every inch she grows, every step closer to being a "big girl" means that we've done something right. It means that we've parented, we've loved, we've sacrificed, we've taught and as a result, she's grown, she's developed, she's learned, she's understood and she's been loved. How wonderful to be privileged to watch these transitions in her life! How blessed to be a part of it! Poopy diapers & all!