Every time I get to walk around without a baby in my arms feels like freedom. Don’t get me wrong, I love carrying my baby. She’s squishy, soft, and smells so scrumptious, but she’s also quite heavy and there are a few hours in the day when I want my body back.
But today was not to be one of those days.
This was the year my driver’s license expired and I had to go to the LTO with my entire family to renew it. Since Tammy hasn’t practiced feeding from the bottle, I take her everywhere with me. And the LTO was no exception.
So there we were filling out forms, wondering how long it was going to take, afraid of the worst. My husband took Tammy away to distract her while Addie and I discussed the pink license case she wanted me to buy (“look at your old one, mama, it’s ripped. You need a new one.”) But he came back telling me Tammy wanted to nurse. So nurse she did and fell asleep in the process, refusing to let go.
I did the medical checkup and had my photo taken with her attached to my breast. The woman taking my photo offered to carry her for me but I said, “It’s okay, you just need my face, right?” then smiled.
The whole thing took less than 40 minutes (hooray, LTO!) but what amazed me was how I was able to do it while Tammy was nursing!
I keep thinking I can’t do anything nowadays because I have to bring the baby with me, but this experience showed me that it’s possible. Not ideal, of course, but possible. Of course this also means Marc has to be with me, helping out, driving me around, carrying the incredibly heavy baby bag. But it can be done.
Each experience I previously thought impossible yet was able to accomplish empowers me even more as a mother. Every day I learn something new and revel in it.
Of course there are days when I feel like I’m stuck at home, can’t do anything, can’t even get myself a drink of water because of the wriggling baby in my arms — and that’s when I feel so helpless, so alone, and so pathetic. Even if those days tend to outnumber the others, when a day like the LTO day happens, I am reminded that I am strong. I am loved. I’m not doing this alone. This will get easier. This will get better. And along the way, I would have gotten stronger, wiser, and more appreciative of life and love.