Learning to Swing (Again)

Not actual baby. πŸ™‚

Yesterday I took Joey IV to Foote Memorial Park for some fresh air and because I am struggling to drop my last 20 pregnancy pounds because a good walk would do us both good.

Joey IV slept like a lump in his stroller and I had lots of time to let my mind wander as I circled the park lap after lap, the smooth pavement guiding my way. I thought about Joey IV hanging like a loose rag doll in the stroller – he’s too small to fill out the big bucket right now but I know soon enough he’ll be busting out of that nylon harness. I wonder as I push the stroller and let it slip from my hands and glide on its own in front of me, if he could actually somehow slip out of the safety device. I know this is not possible and I catch the stroller after one and half strides and I push him away again.

I try to enjoy the warm breeze from nearby Long Island Sound and listen to the birds nesting and visiting the bountiful trees of the park. I try so hard to β€œbe” in the moment but I am not very good at it. My mind quickly slips to my most recent preoccupation, my occupation, and I think about the future. I think about my career. How will I juggle Joey IV and work? Will I be good at being a mom? Will my job change? My mind races and Joey IV sleeps in a deep, peaceful slumber.

I round the corner past the tennis courts and as my mind wanders thinking about how I’ll never be someone who plays tennis, a gathering near the swings shifts my attention. A father pushes his new child who is maybe eight months old ­– I am still really bad at recognizing the age of children by the amount of chub in their cheeks – and a mother stands in front of the swing documenting the event on video. A grandmother is nearby beaming. The child, who may have special needs, appears to never have been on a swing before and he is laughing and shrieking with joy. He is smiling with lips stretched as far as humanly possible. I am so touched realizing that this woman has captured this experience of sheer joy and elation on video. At that very moment, all four of them are β€œin” the moment and I am pulled in as well.

Joey IV and I emerge from the scene for one last lap around the park and we stop halfway to sit under the shade of a tree. Joey IV is still sleeping soundly but I gently pull him from his harness and sit him in the grass with me. We both listen to the sounds of nature and I notice the beauty of the tree bark and the way the light dances through the leaves. I hope Joey IV can smell the earth and enjoy the way the wind dances across his skin. The moment is short-lived but for the time I am really β€œin” it and I quietly thank the baby on the swing for reminding me how to just β€œbe.”

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7 thoughts on “Learning to Swing (Again)

  1. Life and mothering is a moment to moment series of events. There will be times that will be cemented in your mind – your baby’s birth for instance. All the little moments will become a collage of his wonderful life with you leading the way. Take in what you can. Forgive yourself for what you forgot (or want to forget). That’s life. That’s mothering. Hold the moments close that you capture and cherish them for life.

  2. Nicole, I really enjoy reading your posts, you have a gift with words and it really makes you stop and think about the simple things! πŸ™‚

  3. Thank you for the advice and thoughts Dana. πŸ™‚ I am so excited to continue on this journey and some how relaxed as well. Stay tuned to see if that changes! πŸ™‚ xxo

  4. Amazingly put dear cuz. And something I struggle with to this day. ❀

  5. Swing on and enjoy every precious moment of motherhood!

  6. Thank you Nicole…for sharing another of my Grandson’s moments with me. From your eloquent description, I felt as if I were right there watching little Joey’s first lesson in nature and what the world is really about. I think you will find that having a child only enhances your creative energy as you are constantly reminded, through him, of the miracle of life.

  7. Motherhood rocks.

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