In your first minutes outside of my womb, time seemed to stand still. My mind was whirling crazily as I processed your cries, your father’s words of joy, the doctors and nurses’ fervent congratulations. I heard it all and yet I heard none of it. You were here, you were finally here and the mix of feelings churning within me were nothing that I had ever experienced.
During those months when it was just you and me in the harsh light of the day, time seemed to move so slowly. Over and over again, I found myself doing the same thing: putting you to sleep, attending to my own personal needs in those short periods when you finally nodded off, hearing you wake up in despondence, feeding you, changing your diapers. I wondered if this is all that parenthood entailed and felt lost.
And when you started smiling and babbling to me, time seemed to move so quickly. The incoherent noises that you made soon evolved to disjointed syllables, which then became many syllables strung together. Those chubby legs kicking in the air soon flipped and are now busy scuttling here and there.
Time is flying by so very fast.
Once upon a time, I felt a teeny bit sad that you are not a girl. I had so wanted to have a girly child to mother. But now that you are here, I cannot imagine life with you.
You are Mama’s darling boy, Mama’s cheeky monkey, Mama’s favorite boy, Mama’s little boo boo. You are everything Mama had ever wanted in a child and more.
At 10 months old, your personality is showing more and more. You are a joyful little being, always waking up with a smile amid that tousled hair. And the gleeful laughter when you spy the cats skulking in the house! It’s so infectious and like a bright ray of sunlight in our grey, adult world. You love music and almost always calm down when I sing to you. Everything is a drum to you, yes, even Mama’s chest.
And you are most definitely a people person. Your favourite thing to do when somebody unfamiliar is carrying you is to examine them in great detail. Sometimes, you even wave to strangers who are trying their darnest not to look at you (they are so Singaporean, so shy).
Right now, I am reveling in your littleness. I love to cuddle you and carry you in my arms and kiss those irresistibly soft cheeks. I love that you are our baby now because I know that you will be a baby no longer.
Yes, time is flying by and soon, you will turn one. Before long, we will be dealing with toddler tantrums, adolescent angst. Then in a blink of an eye, you will be flying the coop and starting a family of your own.
But no, I shall not think about that. I am not thinking about what pre-school to enroll you in, how to get you into a good primary school, what sort of enrichment classes to send you to.
No. I’m enjoying today, the present, and bottling up the babyhood memories of you. And I hope that one day, if you ever read this, you will realise just how much I love you.