April 23, 2009

Latest and Greatest on Quint and Motherhood

3rd place blog topic winner of the poll I took back HERE was "Latest and Greatest on Quint and Motherhood".

Here's your nickel tour ~

We just had our third and final post-placement meeting with the social worker yesterday. It was fine - uneventful even. We met, we chatted - she gave me some good advice, and we hugged and said "let's not do this again" (chuckle chuckle) Actually, she's also our SW for Keira - so we'll be seeing her again for an update before we accept our referral.

Next month marks a year that we've been home and I guess the thing that strikes me the most is how much he has grown and changed in the last 11 months. It's like warp speed - and yet, it feels like eons ago that we were in Africa being handed this little bundle of giggles and curiosity. Sadly, everyone who says "enjoy it because it flies by" is right. It truly does fly by. And remarkably - you find that as much as you value the milestones, you miss what has passed even more. And you don't really see it coming. You want for them all the "nexts" while not really enjoying the "nows". You move through the phases of wanting to watch them grow. Rolling over, sitting, standing, crawling, walking, babbling, talking, running...next thing you know and you've got a certified big boy/girl. It's shocking - where did it go? Oh that's right...I was the one on the other side of the lens saying "thatta boy...you can do it...there you go!" And just like that...he was my big boy.

Yesterday he was a tiny six month old who had never tasted solid food, couldn't sit up on his own, and smiled constantly. Today, he's a carb lovin', "get yer motor runnin", catch me if you can toddler who is still smiling constantly - in between temper tantrums, that is.

I'm still getting used to the idea of being someones mother, actually. It still amazes me how much you can love another person. How frustrated you can get at a little person who knows every single button to push on your panel, and then how quickly that frustration turns to laughter when they flip on the charm and smile winningly at you. How tired I can actually get chasing after a 17 month old...and think that I can't possibly be any more tired...and then low and behold...I am.

For every down side, there seem to be many more up sides. For every moment of pure hair-pulling insanity, there are tons of simple pleasures just being his mom.

I can't lie - there are days I want to jump overboard and pop a hole in the dingy. But there are no nights when I put him to bed with a kiss and a good squeeze and an "I love you, buddy boy", that I don't close his bedroom door and say to myself "he's the best boy ever..."

It's just God's way of refilling the tank daily. You think you can't do it again - can't get up and face it again - can't find one more thing that's amusing about having your cell phone dumped into the toilet, or your cat's tail pulled, or your dogs water bowls thrown in the floor, or your car keys thrown away.....(I could go on...) and then you kiss them goodnight and suddenly all of that melts away. It's remarkable. And each morning, you're excited to see their little face all over again, and experience a new day with them - and explore the world they see. I don't know how it happens, it just...does.

I thank God every day that He saw fit to give Quint to us to love and to raise and to know. It seems like all the time we hear people say "I can't imagine my life without my baby". I get what they mean, but, well, I can imagine it. Quite well, actually. I lived it for too many years. I know exactly how my days and nights began and ended without him. How my time was spent, what I did and where I went. I know what it was like to live my life without him.

Yes, I had free time, but I didn't always use it very wisely. Yes, my house was cleaner and I read more, shopped more and I went where I wanted to when I wanted to. Yes, I lived differently - and I don't have many regrets about that life. But now - comparatively? You couldn't pay me all the gold in the world for an exchange.

I waited for what felt to me like an entire lifetime of loneliness and longing - just getting through each day full of my little "freedoms" - but broken on the inside. Longing on the inside. Tired on the inside.

Until him.

So motherhood is everything that everyone tells you it is. Over-rated...sometimes. Under-rated...a lot of times. Hard work? The hardest work you will ever do and that's not a cliche. Fun and rewarding? Oh so very, very much. Tiring? Like you can't believe - and still won't until you live it. Frustrating? Undeniably has its moments. Fulfilling? There are no words to tell you, truly. Heartbreaking? Utterly. Makes your heart swell to like 50 times the capacity you thought even remotely possible? You better believe it. Love like nothing you've ever known? Bullseye.

And so I guess the latest and greatest is just that it's everything it's cracked up to be. The good and the not as good as you'd like it to be. The frustrating, the happy, the sad, the ridiculously cute, the insanely charming, the meltdowns, the triumphs, the achievements, the rewards, the tears, the laughter, the fatigue, the hunger, the doubt, the kisses, the hugs, the boo-boos, the unwanted advice, the criticism, the pats on the back, the encouragement, the support and the lack-there-of, the freedoms gone and the responsibilities come to stay, the wear and tear and the broken, the diapers, the vomit, the fevers, the gadgets, the "20-minutes longer to do everything" adjustment period, the baths, the smell of baby powder and lotion, the way they smell when they snuggle against you, the loss of "life" as you knew it and the gain of life as you now know it...sweet, sweet life...

and most of all, the good night kiss and tight squeeze and an "I love you, buddy boy".

Best little boy ever...


Valerie said...

You nailed it! It does help that your child is particularly adorable and easy on the eye and heart.

We had our last home visit today; so glad that is over and done with at last.

Q's name did come up and we both agreed he is special.

Love you.


Kim said...

Glad you are done with your homestudy visits..
Now you will begin again..
Keira is going to be here SOON..
It is truly amazing how fast they grow.. stop by and see my baby on my blog..
he is not a baby anymore..
And cherish every moment..
Motherhood is the HARDEST job anyone could ever have..
This is an AMAZING post..
Hugs to you ..
Bring on the babies..
I am sooo ready to see Keira in the photos with Quint.. you are going to be one busy momma...
Hugs girly..

Briana's Mom said...

This post was AMAZING. I could have said it all myself. Motherhood is certainly the hardest job I have ever had. I just did a post where I compared a pic of Bri from last year and this year. I can't believe the change in just one year. It is amazing how fast they grow up.

The Gang's Momma! said...

Awesome! What a beautifully written posts. Sometimes I wonder how I can continue to live with the contrasts: the hard on its hardest days vs. the lovely moments of bliss. Then I look at them all and see all they were, all they are now, and who they are becoming. And I cry. That's how I live with the contrasts!

Sue said...

First let me say I love your blog! Second, your son is just the cutest guy ever!....

and yes, time goes by soooo fast. My daughter is 4 and growing up at warp speed....slow down!!!

Sue ; )

Melanie said...

Well said! In another year, you're going to look back and say, "Big Boy?! WHAT?!?! He's so little!" :)

frogglet said...

Wonderful post! I can't believe it has been almost a year since you brought him home.

Take Care,

blissfully caffeinated said...

I'm five years in and I still sometimes experience a little shock when I catch a glimpse of myself dragging two kids along by the hand.

Quint is so sweet and I am so happy you guys found each other.


sawheeler said...

I haven't been here for a while, so I am shocked that it's been a year already! It's been a year (on the 23rd) since we got Noah's referral; he is also 'the best boy ever' - can't even imagine my life without him! Happy 1 year!

Linda said...

Happy 1 year!!! He is still as cute as ever and what can be said about that smile!!!
I was thinking the other night about the best moments in my life and they were when I had children and 2nd best when they gave me Grandkids... The hardest job in the world is being a Mom and the best is being a Mom and Gramma.. Wishing for you many happy loving moments in your life... Linda

Kristy said...

Christie this was just a beautiful post, and so , so , true. Our "baby" for now is 16 years old and I just don't know where the time has gone. Sometimes it is even painful to watch movies or look at pictures because I wonder...was I there??? But for me like you, motherhood is all I ever dreamed of and oh how God has blessed me. I just can't understand why he has been so good to me. I am just an ordinary person and yet he has given me the world and then some. Again this post was beautiful just like your family, I can't wait to see Keira in the mix.

Love and blessings, Kristy

p.s. If you happen to see my Vicki, please give her a hug for me, I know that the wait is so discouraging to her.

Eloise said...

You know that the Quint posts are my very favorites! I so admire how you are relishing and enjoying each stage with him. And it just baffles me how that baby can possibly get cuter with each post, but he does.

I know you're discouraged about your continuing wait for sweet Keira. I trust that when she does finally arrive in your lives (and not just in your hearts), something will be apparent about God's timing, whether it be the spacing between her and Quint or a situation in China that permitted your daughter to be ready to join your family, so that you can feel some peace about this unfathomable wait. My heart aches for you as this drags on and on, but oh what a joyous celebration when Keira's referral FINALLY comes!

Have a good week.