When you’re done having babies

Dear mama,

You are done having babies.

I know part of you is really sad about this.

The oldest two are hardly babies anymore, and your newborn is no longer a newborn. Time sure seems to speed up with each child, doesn’t it?

You’ve breathed in every moment with this precious last one and I know you’ll continue to cherish these early years.

I know part of you is really sad about this, but I also know that part of you is a little relieved.

Pregnancy was never very fun for you. It’s okay to feel a little excited even now that you can kiss the days of constant nausea goodbye.

In fact, you can say goodbye to those maternity clothes, too. Sure, they were comfy, but they just remind you of back pain, heartburn and hovering over the toilet.

So go on. Find an expecting first-time mom and just give them to her with a knowing smile. The same way they were passed down to you.

And it’s okay if you’re not quite ready to get rid of any baby clothes just quite yet. You hold on to them as long as you need to. I know there will be times when you ache for the days of snuggling up with a newborn.

Just don’t get any ideas, because you are done having babies.

It’s almost funny to think about how quickly this all happened.

From the moment you got married, people have been asking when you’d start having kids.

As soon as you birthed that first sweet baby, those same well-meaning folks were asking when she’d get a brother or sister.

And then the questions stopped.

But your baby itch did not.

Do you remember when you started telling people you were pregnant with number three? They start to look at you like you’re nuts!

Today, you are officially outnumbered and yet your hands feel as full as your heart does.

And it feels good.

You truly feel as though your family is complete.

But just remember, while you’re done having babies, you have a lot more parenting to do.

Stay strong, mama.

Welcoming my last baby

last baby

Unless you are personal friends with me on Facebook, you may be wondering where in the world I’ve been these last few months.

You know I was expecting and that my business was taking off. But to be gone for so long, because of a baby and some new clients?

I’ll have plenty to say on all of that later this week…

Today I just want to share with you all the feels over welcoming the newest addition to our family, our rainbow baby, and our last baby, Audrey Mae.

last baby

Yesterday this sweet little girl turned one month old.

And I cried all of the tears.

Such a milestone might not seem like that big of a deal, but for this mom of three, it’s huge.

When our oldest, Daphne, was one month old I was barely coming out of the new motherhood fog. Luckily, she was an easy baby, so most of our adjustments didn’t come with a side of sleep deprivation. Every day with this baby with new and exciting, because everything we experienced with her was a first.

After Henry arrived, the first few weeks were a bit chaotic, but the days of midnight diaper changes and on-demanding feeding with his sister weren’t so far behind us so it was a bit like relearning to ride a bike. This middle-child-to-be had plenty of firsts, too. It turns out, boys and girls are very different. By one month, we were finally starting to hit our stride with juggling two.

But with Audrey, things are different.

Because with my last baby, I won’t just be celebrating her firsts.

I’m also mourning the lasts.

Yesterday was the last time a baby of mine will turn one month old!

last baby

It’s so hard to believe, because I remember her being born like it was yesterday.

She decided she was ready in the early hours of the morning and woke me up. After a shower {clean!} and a quick bite to eat {fuel!}, we made it to the hospital.

We didn’t actually know that she was a she at the time. For our final love bug, my husband and I decided that since we were already equipped with the clothing and gear for a boy or a girl, we elected to keep this one a surprise {which ended up being much easier than this planner had anticipated, and totally worth the wait}.

I had a hunch this little nugget would be exactly what big sister wanted, another girl. For starters, I was extra sick this pregnancy which landed me in the emergency room, just like with big sister. The final icing on the cake was once we were admitted to the hospital, our L&D nurse’s name was Jacqueline, which was my front-running girl name going into the hospital. If that wasn’t a sign!

Dad refused to commit to a gender guess. {I think he just didn’t want to be wrong…}

I had already labored to the finish line by the time I was able to get an epidural, so within 15 minutes the doctor and nurses had flooded into the room for the big finish.

With the pain relief kicking in, I can truly say I enjoyed the delivery. It cracks me up now, but I was holding conversations with the people in the room between the three rounds of pushes until we finally got to meet our – surprise! – girl.

You know how when you get married everyone tells you to try to slow down and enjoy the moment, because it will go by so quickly? That is exactly what I did when my last baby was born. I noticed who was in the room and watched my husband as he gazed down at our newborn. I looked the doctors and nurses in the eyes and thanked them silently. Then I finally held my tiny creation, this amazing miracle I had grown and delivered into the world, and breathed in every ounce of my new daughter. And I cried.

After looking at our precious baby, we felt she was already our Audrey, as if she had named herself! Her middle name didn’t come quite as quickly. In fact, if it weren’t for birth certificate paperwork we may still be deciding!

Big sister’s middle name is her Godmother’s middle name, and big brother’s middle name is his grandfather’s name. Not wanting to stray from the family ties, we settled on Mae….my mother’s grandmother’s name and a true Matriarch.

last baby siblings

In most mommy circles, “baby brain” is a real deal thing. And the more kids we have, the worse it seems to get!

I know I won’t always be so observant, so present to take it all in.

And unlike the firsts that seem to be so obvious, it’s easy to forget to slow down and cherish the lasts.

Happy one month to my sweet girl, my last baby!

{All images courtesy of Haven Photography}