Dear Little Mister:
I feel optimistic about the future. When we knew you were arriving, Daddy and I purchased some things to help transform your sister's room into a space that was comfortable for both of you. One the items was a wall quote: "I knew when I met you an adventure was going to happen." While that quote is still in the box, the sentiment has come to life over the past few weeks in a bold way.
You are sitting on your own for long periods of time. I love giving you a toy and watching you play. You continue to love food. We are slowly introducing new foods. You are becoming more vocal. I am a little bit hurt that you have said, "no," but are still not saying mama. I think that you know your name because you sometimes turn when we call you. When you feel like you are being ignored, you make a lot of noise to make sure we notice you. You have started doing some yoga moves outside of class. Your favorite body parts are your feet; you love grabbing and chewing them :)
When you turned seven months old, we were at a conference. I have been trying to network and find my way back to the working world. I know for sure that I need to be in a place that has good work culture and I want to do my best to find work about which I am passionate, that pays well, and gives me energy to be a good partner to Daddy, and a good parent to you and your sister. I care very deeply about reproductive justice; in particular, I have been thinking about how to help create structures that support working parents. I attended this particular conference last when I was pregnant with your sister and presented about the need to transform a culture of son preference. I was excited to return to reconnect with some of the folks I had worked with before, meet some new people, and get energized and excited about the possibilities. Child care was included with registration, so I was happy to bring you along.
I must pause to confess something. I love spending time with you and want to take you for adventures. I am glad for the chance to do yoga, swimming, and library visits. I like breaking up our routine with things that I think you will enjoy. HOWEVER, sometimes I get nervous by the logistics. It is not fun to lug around a lot of stuff. Before we do something new, I sometimes feel stressed about how everything will come together.
In the weeks leading up to the conference, I was worried about how everything would come together. Mostly, I was hoping that you would like the child care providers and that we would both be able to eat and sleep well. I also hoped that I could make connections and get some good ideas for the next step in my career. When I imagined the experience, I thought of your care as something I needed to take care of and keep separate from all the work related stuff.
You opened up another possibility. You were charming and adorable. There were other kids in the child care and I got to talk with parents, not just about kids, but parenting in general. I got a lot of encouragement. Later, I saw the parents at a session and I no longer felt nervous about approaching them. I realized (again) that parenthood is a powerful connector, that you and your sister continue to help me strive to be a better person, and I felt hope that good things are going to come!