Today we celebrate Ayaan’s first birthday. *BRB – Crying*
There are so many memories I wish I could put away from this past year so I can review them, in a Pensieve like in Harry Potter. I try to remember even the tiniest moments but I can feel so many memories already slipping away. What will I actually remember when Ayaan is two, five, eighteen? I keep a memory box with little bits and bobs, I take as many pictures as I can hoping they will help jog my memory but I know I won’t remember everything, and that’s ok. More than anything this year has been about growth, both for Ayaan and for myself.
Having Ayaan in my life has taught me to unapologetically be me. Standing up for Ayaan and being his voice has given me mine. He has taught me patience, perseverance, confidence, instinct, communication, resilience, and unconditional love. He has given me the strength to trust myself by showing me in every moment that he undeniably trusts me. Even though I may doubt myself, he doesn’t doubt me. I am his safe place.
We have accomplished so much this past year. We are half way through our breastfeeding goal. Ayaan is eating like a champ. Sleeping like a champ, (almost). He is almost walking and is a strong-willed, happy and wonderful little man to be around; bringing so much joy to everyone around him. His laughter lights up my soul and fuels me. Even on the hard days, and yes we have quite a few of them, he reminds me of the importance of the lessons we can learn from these low moments and to cherish the high ones.
I am an incredibly sentimental person but I always felt like I had to be careful how I express myself – not be too outspoken, make sure I am not “too much” or too demanding. I always felt that I needed to keep the balance – make sure everyone else was ok, feeling uncomfortable until they were. I have a history of making excuses for everything to keep peace but I am finding the strength to let go of the people who, although were so integral in my life, are no longer serving me.
Motherhood has been transformational. I’ve learnt that being vulnerable is being strong. I’ve learnt I can’t be everything for everyone and I don’t need to. I’ve learnt that it’s important to feel every thing in its entirety, feel the love, the pain, the anger, the sadness, the happiness, the guilt, the anxiety. I want Ayaan to know that managing all these feelings is important for self development.
Ayaan has given me direction and purpose. I am not under the illusion that Ayaan will fulfil or complete me, but he has been integral in reminding myself about all the remarkable things that make me enough.
I listen to one song on repeat when I fall in love with it. Sometimes specific songs will evoke feelings from years ago, when I used to listen to that particular song on repeat, and all the feelings from that time will flood in. I like to share all my favourites, songs, books, restaurants, brands, literally anything that brings me joy. I laugh with all the air in my lungs, a very loud and un-ignorable laugh, now one of my favourite traits. I express myself through my favourite quotes, songs, poems, books…this blog.
I love to dance – instantly creating sparks of joy. My dreams are intense and though I may not remember them, I always remember how I felt in them. I love giving personalised gifts and I cherish them when I am on the receiving end. I like to celebrate everything but not in a grandiose manner. Recently, I enjoy the challenge of learning how to create and make things from scratch – baking, knitting, crocheting, mosaics. I can be a perfectionist and start a project multiple times until it’s exactly how I imagined it would be – though I am learning to enjoy the imperfections, as my husband (the real artist) says, these are my unique signatures.
I feel everything so very deeply – when I am down I can be extremely hard on myself and retreat completely and when I am happy I want to share it with the world. My emotions are always apparent on my face, which at times may not be such a good thing. I choose to only engage in mutually respectful conversations about the things I am passionate about. I am not a people person but I love MY people to a fault. I believe you can always make time for the things you love and I seek inspiration in everything in life.
These are just a few of the things that Ayaan has taught me to be proud of and love about myself. And for that I will forever be grateful to him. Happy first birthday my sweet boy! I love you so much and I love being your mum, you have made my world infinitely brighter. My heart is so full.