Rachel Garavito is back, baby!

by Rachel Garavito

I never thought I’d be so happy to hear a burp.

My newborn daughter had been up all night crying and I couldn’t for the life of me calm her down. I’d checked her diaper; it was clean. She just ate so I knew she couldn’t be hungry. Was this colic? I’d read about colic but wasn’t sure if this was the real deal or not. Just as I was about to give up hope and burst into tears myself, she burped. And silence fell over the room. With that tiny gastrointestinal sound my fears and doubts vanished and we were both able to get some much needed sleep, my status as a good nurturer safe and sound.

She’s been with us for six weeks now, six long weeks of sleepless nights and frustrations over feedings and countless relatives coming in and out. In terms of being on maternity leave however, time has flown and I can’t believe I’m going back to work this week. I just can’t get enough of this kid… her beautiful face, her soft skin and the way she huffs and puffs before she decides if she’ll scream or go back to sleep. Her tiny neck muscles are getting stronger by the day and she’s able to lift her head up to study our faces. Just as you coo and tell her she’s the cutest thing in the world her muscles give in and she head butts you right in the forehead. Adorable.

They don’t do much at this age so it’s easy for newbie parents to get acquainted with our new. She cries, we jump. She squirms, we hold our breath to see if she’s going to cry. She toots, we laugh. You have to admit it’s pretty funny to see a baby wrinkle up their face and let one rip. We call it her “Morning Thunder,” but it usually lasts all day.

When I heard about how many sleepless nights new parents had, I assumed it was mostly because of the baby crying. But sometimes I can’t sleep at night because I’m awake worrying about her, wondering what her life is going to be like, thinking about my own parents and about how quickly life changes. Maybe I shouldn’t have been such a jerk to my mom when I was a teenager. Maybe my dad took the custody battles during my parent’s divorce harder than I gave him credit for. I miss family who is no longer with us and able to meet my new baby.

It’s weird how naturally motherhood comes, but it’s not like you have much of a choice. I went from never holding a newborn to carrying her like a football and flipping her onto my shoulder. She’s more durable than I originally gave her credit for.

Being a mom is seriously the coolest thing to ever happen to me in my life… and I can’t wait to start all over with another one.

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