How did I get here?

portuguese-mosaic-1531658

I have these “moments” every now and then where I seem to be hyper aware of being in the moment:  remembering the sights, sounds, smells, enjoying the present.  The first moment that I can truly recall like this was when I was hmmm… a sophomore in college.  I was driving around my little college town and breathing in what must have felt like the “freedom” of being a grown-up.  Of course I had no idea in my 19-year-old head what being an adult actually meant, but I was kind of trying it out.  Like trying on clothes.  I wanted to see what it was like, see if I could do it.  I remember that I had my windows down in my car, I remember what the wind felt like and that I was listening to a lot of Green Day at that point. It was springtime and warm outside and the air smelled sweet because the cherry blossom trees were in bloom.   I had a car phone.  (LOL!  Right?  That’s how long ago this was.  A CAR phone.)  I felt so important because I had a phone.  IN my car.  I was obviously not supposed to use it except for emergencies because it was absurdly expensive per minute, but still.  Fun to have.  I remember that I used to love checking my mail at the college post office because it was the first time I had an address that was just my own.

The next “moment” that I recall capturing was when we first moved to Chicago.  We had an adorable apartment on the north side of the city.   It had french doors opening to the dining room, a completely square kitchen and zero closet space.  I loved that apartment.  That is where DH and I really stretched our wings.  We had to “sink or swim” in the big city and we learned how to swim together.  Amidst all the other 20-somethings trying to figure out life and how to use the transit system.  We were very broke, so we spent a lot of time playing video games at home or playing rpgs (role playing games) with our friends.  I remember playing Theme Hospital on the playstation game system and feeling so content in my little apartment, 650 miles from my family.  We ate a lot of macaroni and cheese (from a box) and ramen noodles.  It was hard, really really hard, but also satisfying in the way that you might be creating  a sculpture and you’re trying to get the vision in your head worked out in tangible form.

Five apartments, 6 jobs and 2 college degrees later, my oldest son was born.  He was beautiful.  A skinny baby with long spindly legs and big blue eyes.  If I think back on it now, I can see his personality just as it is now, but emerging through his little baby gestures and sounds.  I remember the first time I cared for him by myself, completely alone after our visiting family left and DH was at work.  I had not gone back to the office yet, and there I was with this little newborn.  Had anyone even checked if this was ok?  That I had this little baby?  What was happening?  It was surreal.  I was sitting in an ugly-patterned orange wingback chair, a hand-me-down from family.  I loved that chair.  It wasn’t a rocker, but it was super comfortable, and most importantly, it fit in our tiny 2-bedroom apartment.  DS made little cooing sounds and wiggled around in my arms.  His little hat was too big and would slide around on his head like a lopsided sailor hat until I straightened it out again.  I was so astounded that I was responsible for this little life.  I had just sat down on this enormous rollercoaster of a ride without an end.  I didn’t even have time to think about whether or not I could do it, I constantly had to keep up with actually doing it:  the care, the love, the food, the diapers, stimuli, tummy time, eventually my workplace and socialization.  If I stopped to think about it anymore I would become overwhelmed, so I just looked at that little baby with the lopsided hat and green dinosaur slippers and smiled and cuddled and held on to him for dear life.  He’s 8 now.  I still love to watch him sleep.

So is this how we recall life in a series of flashbacks like this where you hit highlights and occasionally look up from all the busy-ness and see where you are before digging in again to “real life” and work and  details?  What a ride.  I wonder what’s around the next bend?

Be Fierce.  Buckle your safety belts.

#IamAFierceMom

Kelly

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s