Megan here. My oldest baby turns five tomorrow.
I am stunned and perplexed as to how this happened so quickly. Everyone told me it would, and I literally spent days staring at my child when she was a newborn, begging her not to change and grow quite so fast. I cried every time I put away each size of clothing. I took about a billion pictures (and a lot of videos), and I even made Shutterfly books every four months during her infancy. That's THREE BOOKS BY THE TIME SHE TURNED ONE. Ridiculous. I even kept a private blog detailing every developmental step, every funny word said. I didn't want to forget a thing. In case you can't tell by now, I'm a sentimental sap who adores babies...especially my own babies.
Despite all of my attempts to savor her babyness...she still grew up too fast. Some days I feel like I missed it all and can hardly remember the details of her as a sassy threenager or what she smelled like as a sweet nursling. I love who she is today and the young girl she is becoming, and yet I can't help but wish I could rewind the clock and hold her for the first time again and again.
I bet you can relate, too.
You see, motherhood is transformative. Not only do we watch a little newborn evolve into a walking, talking person with an independent soul, but we also are transformed into new people along with them. When I think of the past five years, I can't help but reminisce on how much having a child has changed me and altered the course of my life permanently.
When I was thirty-seven weeks pregnant with my first baby I was laid off from a job I thought I'd have for a long time. I then got in a car accident on my due date and almost had an emergency C-section because of it, but my sweet girl stayed in for another eight days before making her debut. A sudden job loss and potentially dangerous accident seemed big and overwhelming then, but what really changed was my life after giving birth.
I call my daughters my angels because they saved me in many ways. They made me more kind, more patient, more focused. Feeding Littles wouldn't exist if I never became a mom. I wouldn't know so many wonderful humans - including Judy - if I never began this journey almost 5 years ago. As much as I hope to influence my children, I will always tell them how much they have changed my life for the better.
In celebration of the big "five," Judy and I wanted to share some of the lessons motherhood has taught us. You see, the reason I love Judy so much is that not only is she a brilliant practitioner, she is also a wise mama. Her children are in their twenties (and are amazing humans themselves), so she shares a perspective about life on the other side of childhood. Of course, she's very close with her kids and is still actively involved in their lives, but she has had the benefit of seeing them through middle school, teenage years, and the ups and downs of college life. Perspective is helpful when you're in the thick of mothering young children, and that's why I love that she will share some of her wisdom about motherhood now that she has been doing it for a while.
If you're reading this and you're struggling to get pregnant or create the family you hope to have, please know that you are not alone and that we know this is a sensitive, lonely topic for many. We share these lessons about motherhood for everyone, not just for people who describe themselves as moms, and we pray that you find peace and resolution on your journey.
Judy's kids (a boy and girl) are two years apart and are now in their early twenties. Judy also works with about 30 families a week in their homes doing feeding therapy, so she gets to know many new moms each month.
My girls are 2.5 years apart and already have very unique, strong personalities. I grew up with a sister and am excited to see how their relationship develops and changes as they get older. I am lucky to get to work with many new moms and want to share some lessons that came hard for me, especially about new motherhood. (Judy and I have some similar themes in our words of wisdom!)
We wish you joy in the craziness of motherhood. Thank you for letting us share our thoughts. Don't forget to share yours below or on Instagram or Facebook!
Megan and Judy, co-owners of Feeding Littles, bring you helpful info on food, nutrition, picky eating, and feeding young children. Megan McNamee MPH, RDN is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Judy Delaware, OTR/L is an Occupational Therapist specializing in feeding therapy with children 3 and under in Boulder, Colorado. Megan and Judy are both moms of two and love helping families develop a healthy appetite for all foods!