Ever since I knew I wanted to have kids-which happened sometime in my late twenties-I’ve thought about what it might look like to travel with them. I always saw us as a family of four traversing some far-flung landscape. But our kids were older, maybe twelve and eight. I didn’t think as much about traveling with a baby, though I assumed we would. Until we actually had a baby I always envisioned my future family life well past the infant stage. So when it came time to pack up and head off with Wren I didn’t have many expectations. Mostly, I just hoped it wouldn’t be a disaster.
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Walking along the trails in the park your little body fights against mine, pushing your feet and hands with all their might to break free, nine pounds of determination. You tilt your head back and look up, wide-blue eyes taking in the world. You’re so alert these days, it seems like only a few weeks ago you had no awareness of the world and now all you want to do is take it all in. You spend your mornings watching the light form patterns on the bedroom blinds, they captivate you and I wonder what it is you’re seeing. Right now though you see me, and the trail, and the sun. You wince in the bright mid-day December sun and settle deeper into your carrier, allowing the motion of my steps to finally lull you to sleep. You’re two months old, today darling. It feels like you were born yesterday, but also that you’ve been with us an eternity. We didn’t know what to expect, but you’ve surprised us anyway. You’re a spitfire to be sure. You awoke one day to realize the world was there, and since you’ve been enthralled with it. You don’t like sleep, after all, there’s so much to look at. At least when the night comes you drift off. But a sleepy, cuddly baby you are not. I hope these hikes and time in nature imprint on you in some way. That you’ll grow up to love nature, it is your birthright, our little California girl. One day, I’ll hold your hand as we amble along the same path, but for now, I cherish holding you against me, listening to the soft hum of your sleeping breath. I know this time is fleeting. And for all of the difficulty of the newborn period, I know I will miss this dearly when you’re too big for my arms to carry.
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She’s here! Born 10/23 in the early afternoon. Insert here the overwhelming sense of love mixed with indescribable life altering feelings of having a newborn. Truly, words would be inadequate. In reality, neither of us knew how’d we react, we knew sometimes it took time to bond with your baby, and that it would be ok if that were true for us. But, from the moment she entered the world, we were absolutely done for. It’s clichéd to be sure, but for reason-the feeling in that moment was like my heart left my body and was handed back to me in the form of a baby. Our baby. Continue reading →