Sunday, August 24, 2014

Catching Up

Hello, my name is Mia and it's been 365 days since my last post. Probably not a single one of those has passed without me thinking to myself that I really should write a quick post. I really should capture some of the insanity of these times for my future self. For my kids. But then, the kids are wired and starving - for food  yes, but more so for attention. Cairn and I have barely stumbled downstairs at 9pm after a long day of work and gym and chores and kids and bedtime and tidying up.

The computer is there, staring at me, goading me to keep up with this writing that I've so grossly neglected for so long, way too long to ever be able to catch up now, in the fleeting moments I have to myself before I go to bed exhausted and it all starts over again tomorrow. Sometimes the computer does get turned on but it's work that happens in that case. Always just work.

 And I'm painfully aware of the family photos that are piling up on various devices around the house - needing desperately to be organized and shared and printed. Hysterically tuned in to how fast my kids are growing and how much I'll forget by not writing it down. And for all that worry, I just can't. I just can't muster it on top of everything else. And so I've decided to forgive myself. I've turned to Instagram in a major way. A picture, after all, is worth a thousand words. The thing is though, I miss the words. And so maybe, when the opportunity presents itself, I'll try again. Even just a few words here and there. But maybe not. Don't hold me to it just yet. After all, there will be a day, in the not so distant future, when the kids are not so demanding and the house is always quiet. And I'm willing to bet that when those days are upon me the words will still be here, ready to flow.

Speaking of the not-so-distant future, my Everley is turning two years old in less than a month. My Bella is staring Grade 1 in a week. Big deals, both. Pictures will be taken and words will be shared. Can't say how many but some. See you soon.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Happy Birthday to You: Everley Edition: 1 Year Old

[Author's note: This post was written in real time using my iPhone note pad on Sept. 20, 2013, a few minutes before Everley's first birthday and my 38th. I don't know why it's taken me so long to post it other than for a long time I wanted to write something different. Something longer maybe? More thought out? But in the end I like the spontaneity of this letter. To me it says everything that needs to be said.] 

Dear Everley, 

It's 11:40pm and you should be sound asleep but instead -- despite my best efforts to comfort you for the last 45 minutes -- you've been tossing around and crying out. In pain? In fear? From pure exhaustion? I don't know. I don't know why but I do know this, exactly one year ago today I was doing the exact same thing. In pain, in fear, from pure exhaustion. But in my case also with excitement and with joy. 

Because you were on your way.

At 12:35am you arrived. And the relief I felt was instantaneous (at least until the stitching began). You were here. You were safe. You were beautiful. You were mine.


365 days later and I know I'm utterly blessed to be able to say the same. You are here, you are safe, you are beautiful, you are mine. And I am yours. Completely.

Please let me never forget these tiny toes.

I want to talk about this year. This crazy year we have had, you and I, but as I sit awake in my bed and listen to you cry from two rooms away, I just can't seem to find the words. Because what are the words that you use to describe the type of connection that you have with someone you have fed, nurtured, rocked, taught, played with, cried with, cleaned, soothed, held, moulded, laughed with, screamed at, snuggled, warmed, cooled, rocked, kissed and hugged and kissed some more? Every day. Every single day, 24 hours a day, for 365 days. How do you describe that with words? You don't.

So I won't try. Instead I'll say this. Happy birthday Everley Read, my soul sister, sharer of birthdays and bringer of joy. I wish you would stop crying now. But if you can't, you know I will come to you, as I have every day for the past 365 days, and do my best to make it right.

Sharers of birthdays.
No matter what and forever and ever.

I love you,


Friday, September 20, 2013

Happy Birthday to You: Everley Edition: 11 Months Old

Dear Everley,

You'll be 11 months old for about, oh, three more hours. I'm squeaking this one in just under the wire and as such we're going to let the photos do the talking. I will just say this, we spent a lot of your 11th month in Ipperwash, basking in the sunshine with family and friends. It was a glorious month. The kind of summer that in my dreams we would enjoy every year. It was so special and so precious to me. I hope that you'll remember it just as fondly when you look back at this one day.

We also monkeyed around on the swings.

And took a speed boat ride around Lake Rosseau. 
But mostly we lazed on the beach and took in the view.
Did some digging with Uncle Matt.
And explored the sand (and ate the sand).
And also, there were naps. Such glorious, warm, summertime naps.

 I love you,


Happy Birthday to You: Everley Edition: 10 Months Old

Dear Everley,

On July 21 you turned 10 months old. I haven't been keeping up with these monthly posts. Obviously you've got the big bday fast approaching (omg tomorrow!) and I'm almost three months behind and that sucks the big one but here's the truth of it - it's not because we've been too busy, though we have been making the most of our precious summer together. And it's not that I am just lazy, though I've definitely put off writing these in favour of simply lying with you on the living room floor and watching you grow and learn and well, just be your beautiful baby self.

No, the truth of it is this - I just have not been able to face it, this passing of time. Though I love and cherish these monthly letters - and I WILL complete them all because you deserve to have this record of your infancy and of our magical year together - they are such a physical and emotional reminder of the damned ticking clock. TICK, TICK, tick, tick... SHUT UP CLOCK. (ticktickticktick)

I want to be witty and funny and clever with these letters to you so you'll look back one day and be all, "Wow, Mom wasn't always such a washed up emotional disaster after all. She was kind of cool and hilarious..." but Everley Read YOU HAVE STOLEN ALL OF MY FUNNY. Seriously. YOU are funny. You are such a clown and so delightful but I'm pretty, pretty certain you got it all from me. And left me with NO MORE FUNNINESS.

Here you are being hilarious. Also, STANDING UP!
 I sit down to write to you and all I want to do is get weepy and philosophical about how special our bond is (very, very) and how much you've changed my life (beyond what words can describe) and how our family - immediate and extended - are so bloody in love with you (read: obsessed) and while it's all true, every word of it, it's not exactly going to illicit a chuckle in 20 years time is it?

So instead, I haven't been writing. And that's not fair. Now I have to catch up and I promise I'm going to do it. All you need to do in return is promise that in 20 years you'll at least pretend that you think I'm cool and hilarious.

Daddy is also cool and hilarious.

Here's a speed round up of the incredible things you mastered between nine and 10 months:

You gave up your arm-pull-toe-push military drag in favour of a classic hands and knees crawl, which you can do at super turbo speed. You started pulled yourself up to standing and within days were cruising around furniture like it ain't no thang.You started clapping and other cute mimicking behaviours. You got your first professional haircut, survived your first heatwave, enjoyed your first shoulder ride (on daddy) and had your first full day at the beach in Ipperwash complete with swimming. You finally cut that top tooth, which was a pain in both your butt and mine and your little three toothed smile was hilarious and infectious.

Beach, bucket, boat, baby.

I love you,


Saturday, July 27, 2013

Happy Birthday to You: Everley Edition: 9 Months Old

Dear Everley,

I've been thinking a lot about how quickly you are growing. It all seems to be happening so fast now. On June 21 you turned nine months old.  I always feel that nine months is a particularly significant age for a baby because it's when you have been on the outside for as long as you were on the inside. It will never ever cease to amaze me that you once fit so perfectly inside my body. INSIDE. MY. BODY. You fit. It's remarkable. And what's even more remarkable than how you once fit IN me, is how you now fit so perfectly OUT of me.


There's something so special about the way your little body fits right onto mine like jigsaw puzzle. When you were a newborn your head would rest in the palm of my hand while your tiny feet curled up in the crook of my elbow. Or you would lie on your tummy across my lap while I gently rocked you back and forth, the fit so perfect that there was no fear that you could fall.


Before long you were able to lie lengthwise in my lap, little smiling face beaming up at me from my knees while your scrumptious feet would gently knead my soft postpartum belly. Before I knew it you were sitting on my hip. Is there anything better? Anything in the world better than a baby on your hip? I still get an absolute surge of joy when I pick you up and you snap right onto me with your chubby legs around my waste and sausage arms tight around my neck.


And how is possible that when you were one hour old, one month old, half a year, nine months -- you always fit just perfectly against my body when you nurse? Head tucked into the crook of my arm, back snug against my inner forearm and little diapered bum tucked perfectly into my hand. It's almost as if I'm growing right along with you. And there it is, isn't it? Because of course, the truth is, I am. We all are - your dad and sister and me. Not only are you the perfect fit physically, but metaphysically as well.

You fit us, Everley Read. You're a perfect fit.

I love you,