The blog has been silent, but I’m feeling pulled to post this week. I am remembering where I was a year ago. A year ago, I was large, my belly rolling to one side as I crawled out of bed. Feeling heavy, hips aching, but loving my round, stretched belly.
At this very moment, I was surrounded by other mamas, being celebrated at my mother blessing. Hearing encouraging words, being given beads that were strung into a necklace to hold during labor, eating cucumbers and Mexican food, having my belly painted with henna. Thinking of the little one, moving in my womb.
A year ago tomorrow, I was harvesting the hops from our vine. Squeezing the blossoms in my fingers to make sure they were ready to be picked. Inhaling that delicious, prickly aroma.
This year, I have been checking on the hops these past few weeks, and they are ready to be plucked from the vines.
I am resistant to harvest them. Summer is ending. So is Hudson’s babyhood.
My last baby. A year ago, I didn’t realize I was mere days from his birth. I didn’t realize he was even a he.
I may have not been ready for his birth, but he certainly was. Two hours from contraction to final push and my last birth was over.
Hudson is our last baby. For the past eight years, we have been working on growing our family. Uncertain in the beginning if we could grow beyond the two of us, now, six years past the birth of our oldest, we know our family is complete with five. It’s hard to comprehend moving past the baby stage, but whether I acknowledge it or not, time moves on. Hudson is almost one. Quickly becoming a toddler. Laughing, playing with his sisters, cruising around on his chubby toes, vrooming cars across our hardwood floors. His gummy smile is being replaced with teeth.
It’s almost overwhelming. Where do I focus? Too soon, the cloth diapers will forever be replaced with underwear. One day in the too-near future, I will no longer nourish a child with milk my body has made.
Reveling in these last few days. Trying to take in the smell of his sweaty, baby head. Squeezing his chubby toes. He’s not one yet. Still a baby. Not quite ready to harvest those hops. Soon. Babies don’t wait.