I Don’t Remember Much

by Karen

I’m going to let you in on my dirty little motherhood secret – I don’t remember much about Weston’s first year.

There – I said it. Out loud. On the Internet.

Greasy hair – check. Man hands – check. Alien looking baby – check.

Most of my memories are tied to pictures; physical proof that he was indeed an infant once. I am sure there are a plethora of reasons why I don’t remember – sleep deprivation, a deployed husband, wine (just kidding), not working, etc… I have trouble remembering the new baby smell and how his three-month old body would rest against mine. I forget what it is was like to nurse him and I can’t really imagine him being only seven pounds. I’d like to think that I was a good (if slightly overwhelmed) mother to the little guy but I have to wonder because I spent a lot of his first year wishing time to pass as quickly as possible. I suppose a year-long deployment will do that to a girl.

When I see parents interacting with their laughing baby, I can’t help but be sad because we never had such times, with the rare exception of a Skype date. Even then, the shaky connection never held for more than a couple of minutes. Clay was recently TDY at Ft. Lewis and stopped by to visit his cousin in Seattle. His cousin and his wife are proud parents to a 7-month-old little girl. When he arrived home, he admitted that seeing their little girl reminded him of everything he missed with Weston. Up until his visit, Clay had never held a 7 month old before. Clay never held his son at 7 months. Or 8 months. Or 9 months. And so on.

That being said, we don’t regret the deployment. At all. Raising our son by myself with a husband at war was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. It was a tough year. But also an incredibly rewarding year. I just wish I remember more.

Little guy is fast approaching two. This means that we’re getting the ever popular unsolicited question, “When are you going to have another one?” About 98% of the time, I don’t mind in the slightest – the majority of people are asking from a place of love and interest. However, the other 2% feel free to tell me that Weston needs a sibling, that only children grow up to be selfish and arrogant members of society, and then give me an antidotal story about their children situation. Fun!

The truth is, we don’t know. Right now we’re enjoying the dynamic of our little family of three so much that we’re not ready to disrupt what we have going on. Maybe we will down the road, maybe we won’t. We’re taking it day by day. We have no set number of children in mind that will make our family complete. After all, life is an adventure and if you try and plan it out too much, you’re bound to miss some incredible moments along the way. I want to soak up everything that is going on around us now. I don’t want to miss it. I want it all. Because I don’t remember much about the first year.