I know everyone makes mistakes their first go-’round of most things, especially pregnancy. A lot of us don’t know what exactly to expect, or what we’re suppose to do. No one warned me how quickly it would all pass or how much I would miss having her tiny feet nudging me from the inside. With this information withheld from me, I neglected to take the necessary steps to savor the moment and document the once in a lifetime process with my daughter, that are now distant memories, only growing more distant. I’m not the maternity photo shoot type, but I regret not relishing in my pregnancy. I regret not celebrating my growing belly and baby. Or having something to show for it all.
As I sit here, eating my apple fritter, and typing these words, it’s sinking in even deeper than it has been. My little girl will only grow bigger, more independent. I will never see her on an ultrasound. I will never feel her adjusting sleeping positions in my tummy. I will never have that first moment, when I looked at her beautiful face and told her I love her for the very first time, ever again. Now, I can only toss through my mind, back and forth, the things I wish I’d done when I had the chance.
Throughout my labor I was completely out of it. I didn’t spend time with my family, laughing through the pain. I didn’t have someone photographing every moment, for reminder of what I endured. I only remember bits and pieces, and was totally drugged up. Being 20 years old, and a first time mother, I wasn’t asked my opinion on getting drugged up or was given any information about what they were giving me. It just happened. Although at the time I was grateful to have been taken out of my tearful, scared state, I wish I hadn’t been given whatever they had given to me. I wish I had stayed alert while fighting through contractions. I wish someone had been documenting everything, no matter how terrible I was feeling. I wish I had more information. I wish I knew.
I wish I had enjoyed my pregnancy for the beautiful, awesome experience it was. I wish I wasn’t impatient about getting her out. I wish I wasn’t in such a hurry to hold her in my arms, and took time to enjoy the sanctity of holding her in my womb.
I wish I wrote everything down. I wish I forced myself to make the time to document, document, document. Savor, savor, savor. I wish I didn’t spend so much time as a new mother stressing out and griping over no sleep. I wish I had just let it roll how it were to roll, and soaked in the love I felt cradling her warm little body.
I wish I had spent more time listening to her breathe and feeling her heartbeat right next to mine, and less time wishing for rest. I wish I had the patience I do now. I wish I had the mentality that I do now. I wish I could have been an incredible first time mom. I know that I was always doing my best. Only going by what I knew, and guessed on the rest. I don’t blame myself for the mistakes I made because I had no idea what I could have been doing differently. It’s always going to be difficult to think about the things I wish I had done, but will never get the chance to fix. But I cannot let it simmer inside for too long. Because I know that I am a better mother today than I was before. And I hope to only get better. I know that at the end of the day being a good mother isn’t about how many pictures I took of my belly, how well labor and birth went, or how much time I wasted wishing for sleep. It’s about the love I have for my daughter and the fact that I care enough to write this.