For the past few days, I have felt immense discomfort with the fact that my son will be two soon.
I asked a mother at a cafe today how she felt that her child was nearly two, "Well, he's not a baby anymore." she said. All at once, tears filled both of our eyes. For the next few moments, we sit together as strangers, allowing ourselves to feel the immense emotions of being a parent.
We happened to meet by chance at a cafe today, yet, as my son is also reaching two, I knew our mirroring created an honourable moment of letting go.
When my son was a baby, I carried him everywhere. I miss being able to keep him safe, warm and close. Our lives were in sync. We did everything together. I hiked, ate, danced and laughed. And all I had to do was look down at my chest, and there he could be seen cosy, protected and smiling.
Now he can walk. I see him explore the world without me, and although there is immense joy in watching him from afar, experiencing the world in wonder. I miss him.
I grieve the simplicity of having a tiny baby. Mothers tell me all the time about the relentless journey that parenting is. That it gets more challenging as they get older. I never understood because of how much harder I thought new parenthood was.
I see it now. One day, it might be weeks until I hear his voice on the phone, and he will be in the world without me.
But I've learnt that part of honouring life is learning to let go. In the past, my refusal to feel my emotions left me hard, closed and disconnected.
As a parent, this is non-existent. I allow myself to cry whenever, wherever. I have softened so much through my journey as a mother. Because I now know my refusal to feel is a refusal to accept life.