Saturday, May 3, 2008

Trusting the Bond

(Image is "Written in My Scars, by me, digital mixed media. I was googling mother/child bonding for an image to use and then remembered "Hi, I just made one.")

I spent the whole day with the Birdy! I've had so much going on that she's been at the grandies' late several times this week, and I worked Friday, which I usually have off. It felt so blissful to have her with us all day. We had a sublime pre-nap snuggle, and bedtime was easy and sweet.

The between sleep times were giggly and wild and silly and chaotic, punctuated with frustrating and exasperating, but the sleep transitions were my favorite. It's interesting how much more I enjoy them now that she isn't nursing to sleep. I think she's always fought to stay awake when she nurses; she doesn't go all milk coma like other kids. When she does start to drift off she pushes away, then latches on and this is why bedtime ritual went from an hour and a half to twenty minutes tops.

I loved the reconnecting we had today. It's so hard still to leave her there when work stuff or art stuff or whatever necessitates that I focus. She is starting to entertain herself better but is still seriously commanding of the attention she needs. Wants?

It's just really hard still for me to accept the "village" scenario. I'm at the point now that I appreciate that I go to work and am not eyeball deep in toddler intensity all day every day, but the challenges of working are still there. The hardest thing has been releasing the ideas I've had about control. It really has been a struggle to accept that I cannot dictate every aspect of her little life. That sounds so fascist. I'm not sure there's a way to explain that away, even... It's just been an evolution toward more trust and openness. I trust that she is safe, and I know with solid, perfect intuition that she is loved so purely when she is in their care. With that trust has slowly grown a more relaxed set of expectations. The pressures and guilt of managing a Parenting Style are receding, and what emerges is a Childhood.

Her childhood will be a tapestry of varied threads- contrasting, overlapping ideas and different loves. It's not a straight line, that I draw in one pen on a map. It's not even my map.

What I do is, I hold her. She whispers, "Mama," and pulls my arm around her. She searches me with her tiny fingers for a new security and she settles with my hair, which she pets or a few minutes before she relaxes into sleep. I listen to her breathe for a long time, and I know that I know that she is at home nuzzled against me. I know that my mother is the compass in my map, whether or not I travel the same paths she did, and I trust in her teachings to guide me into her role.

No comments: